Article | Last updated: 06/08/2013 | Child Abduction
Where is your child?
Contact your nearest police station for advice on whether your child should be reported as missing and whether an international search notice should be issued. You can read more about searching for a child/abductor under Emergency situations.
What can I do to get my child home?
This varies from case to case. If you know which country your child has been abducted to, find out whether it is a convention country: List of countries
If you do not know which country your child has been taken to, contact the nearest police station for advice on whether your child should be reported as missing and whether an international search notice should be issued. You can read more about this under Emergency situation. You should also consider contacting a lawyer.
Do I need a lawyer?
Experience shows that you are likely to need the assistance of a lawyer in the country to which your child has been abducted. If your child has been abducted to a non-convention country, you may need the help of two lawyers, one in Norway and one in the country to where your child has been abducted.
What is the Hague Convention?
This is an international agreement that is intended to make it easier to secure the return of abducted children. Norway has ratified this convention, and you can read more about it under To or from a signatory state - the Hague Convention.
Will it take a long time to get my child back?
This varies from case to case. If your child has been abducted to a country that has joined the Hague Convention, the authorities are obliged to do everything they can to ensure that the child is returned as quickly as possible. However, the process may take longer, depending among others on the complexity of the case. If your child has been abducted to a non-convention county, you may have to institute custody proceedings in the country where the child has been abducted to. Such proceedings often take a long time.
Is it expensive to obtain the necessary legal advice?
As a main rule, the parents of abducted children have to cover their legal expenses themselves, and these can be high. However, parents can apply for financial assistance from the Norwegian authorities. You can read more about this topic under Financial assistance.
Can I bring my child back myself?
Any attempt to take your child back may put the child in a difficult position. The child has already been uprooted once from its home, normal routines and one parent. This can be a very traumatic experience. Being abducted and uprooted again can make things even more difficult for your child. In addition, a second abduction could intensify the conflict between you and the other parent, making future access and cooperation on matters related to your child more difficult. There is also a great risk that your actions will be regarded as kidnapping by the other parent and the authorities in the country in where your child has been taken. The Norwegian authorities are unable to provide assistance or advice in connection with actions that may conflict with the laws and rules of another country.