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Child Abduction Law UK

Has your child been taken or kept abroad without your consent or knowledge? We can advise on child abduction laws.

Child abduction law and parental abduction laws are highly sensitive and emotive topics for parents, and our team of expert solicitors are here to help. The unauthorised removal or retention of children abroad is a specialised area involving international conventions, English and foreign laws. Where a child has been removed abroad and where countries are party to The Hague Convention on International Child Abduction, a request can be made to that country for the child to be returned. Parental abduction laws are complex and we recommend seeking the counsel of a family law solicitor to help.

What Does Abduction Mean?

According to the Child Abduction Act 1984:

“…a person connected with a child under the age of 16 commits an offence if he takes or sends a child outside of the United Kingdom without the appropriate consent.”

Child abduction describes the scenario where a person who is connected to a child removes them from their country of residence without the permission of their parents or the courts. This is typically carried out after a separation or divorce by a parent who was not awarded custody of the child in question, under parental abduction laws.  Although child abduction was once a rarity, due to the increase in divorce rates, cheaper travel, and changes in immigration law, there has been a rise in international custody disputes, resulting in child abduction cases. This is why it is more important than ever to be aware of parental abduction laws.

Are Worried that Your Child is at Risk of being Abducted?

If you are worried that your child is at risk of being abducted, there are practical steps that can be taken to prevent this from happening such as:

  • Obtaining a Court order.
  • Notifying the passport office that a passport should not be issued for this child.
    • This may include contacting the embassy or consulate in another country if the other parent is of another nationality.
  • Putting out a port alert, if necessary.

We encourage you to contact our family law team as soon as possible if you are concerned about parental abduction law so that we are able to advise you effectively. At Newtons, our specialist children lawyers are on hand to advise and guide you through this complex and difficult area of law.

Please contact us today to arrange a consultation.

Our family law team is here to help.

Please call us to find out how we can help. We have offices throughout Yorkshire, Teesside and County Durham. We can talk on the phone or arrange a meeting where we can discuss your options and give you a clear idea of timeframes and costs.

Alternatively, please contact us online and we’ll call you back when it’s convenient for you.