State v. Central Council of Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska, March 25, 2016 (Alaska)

Synopsis provided by Westlaw: Central Council of Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes filed action against state, seeking declaratory judgment that its tribal court system had subject matter jurisdiction over child support matters and seeking an injunction requiring the state’s child support enforcement agency to recognize tribal courts’ child support orders. The Superior Court, First Judicial District, Juneau, Philip M. Pallenberg, J., entered judgment in favor of the tribes. State appealed.

Holdings provided by Westlaw: The Supreme Court, Fabe, C.J., held that:
1)tribal courts have inherent, non-territorial subject matter jurisdiction to adjudicate parents’ child support obligations, and
2) the power to set nonmember parents’ child support obligations is within the retained powers of membership-based inherent tribal sovereignty.

Read the full decision at the National Indian Law Library website.