What to do if you believe your childhas been abducted
Contact the police immediately
Provide the police with as much informationas you can. Try to provide information on thefollowing:
The full name of your child, theirdescription and nationality – provide aphotograph
Why you think your child may have beenabducted
The day, date, time and location of theabduction
The name and details of the person theywere with when they were abducted
Where you think your child may be nowand where you think they may be taken
Details of the person you think may havetaken your child or may be with yourchild now, including their full name,description and nationality if you knowthis information
What links the person who has takenyour child has to other places in the UKor other countries
Details of any vehicle owned or used bythe person you think may have takenyour child
Details of any previous threats to takeyour child and any previous abductions orattempted abductions
Whether your child has their ownpassport and whether it is a UK or foreignpassport. Provide the passport number,date and place of issue, if known
Whether the child has dual nationality (sohas more than one passport)
What the situation is in relation tocustody of your child, including anycustody proceedings or Court Orders andyour current marital status
Copies of your child’s birth certificate andany other agreements or Court Orderswhich apply to the child
Any other information you think mighthelp the police find your child.If it is not too late, the police may be able totake some measures to stop your child frombeing taken out of the country. If your childhas already been taken outside the UK, thepolice may be able to work with Interpol andpolice forces in other countries to find yourchild.
If your child has been abducted by their otherparent, you should also contact Reunite. Thischarity specialises in providing help, adviceand support to people affected by internationalparental child abduction. You can speak tosomeone from Reunite by contacting theiradvice line on
01162 556 234
or by email at
. There is a lot of helpful information on their websitewww.reunite.org, including frequently askedquestions about international parental childabduction. The website has a library of documents which you may find useful, as wellas links to groups and organisations from anumber of different countries that may be ableto assist you. Reunite also offer a specialistmediation service.
Contact a lawyer
In some cases it may be necessary to get aHigh Court Order to prevent your child frombeing taken out of the country. You shouldconsult a suitably qualified lawyer as soon aspossible. The charity Reunite will be able toprovide you with advice and, if necessary,details of qualified lawyers.
Contact the Child Abduction Section atthe Foreign and Commonwealth Office(FCO)
The FCO can provide you with moreinformation about what you can do if you thinkyour child has been abducted. You can contactthem on
020 7008 0878
(or out of officehours on
020 7008 1500
). More informationcan be obtained from the FCO website andtheir useful guide on parental child abduction.