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The child has been taken abroad

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If the other parent has taken your child abroad without your consent, it may be a case of international child abduction.

If you have joint custody

It is a case of international child abduction, if all these conditions are met:

  • Custody is in dispute.
  • No decision has been made allowing the child to stay or take up its residence abroad.
  • The other parent has taken the child abroad or retains the child abroad without your consent and with the intent to remain abroad.

If you have sole custody

It is a case of international child abduction, if both these conditions are met:

  • No decision has been made allowing the child to stay abroad.
  • The other parent has taken the child abroad or retains the child abroad without your consent and intends to remain abroad.

If you do not have custody 

It is not a case of child abduction, if you do not have custody. The other parent, who has custody, is allowed to take the child abroad without your consent.

What to do in case of international child abduction

If your child has been abducted to or is retained in a convention state, you can apply to have your child returned under the Hague Convention or the European Convention.

All convention states have a central authority which receives and transmits applications from parents who want their children returned. The Ministry of Children, Gender Equality, Integration and Social Affairs is the Central Authority of Denmark.

Under ‘Cooperation under the conventions’, you can see the states with which Denmark cooperates under the Hague Convention and the European Convention.

If your child has been abducted to or is being retained in a state which has not acceded to either of these conventions, the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs handles the case. You can either contact the Ministry of Foreign Affairs directly or contact the Child Abduction Unit, which coordinates the efforts to get your child back.

Application

If you want your child returned from a convention state you must send the following documents to:

The Ministry of Children, Gender Equality, Integration and Social Affairs
Holmens Kanal 22
1060 Copenhagen K
Denmark 

  • Application form (one form per child)
  • Authorization
  • Copy of the child’s/children’s certificate(s) of birth and baptism
  • Documentation for custody 
  • Photos of the child and the alleged abductor

The documents must be translated into the official language of the recipient country, that is, the country to which the child has been abducted.

The application form must be completed in English or French. Applications to Norway, Sweden, Finland or Iceland may be completed in Danish. Most countries also want the application form in their official language. For several countries, it is possible to find the application form in their official language. In this way, only the information that you write in the application form needs to be translated.

Please call the Ministry of Children, Gender Equality, Integration and Social Affairs on +45 33 92 93 00, if you have any questions about completing the forms or about the required documentation.

Legal aid

You can apply for legal aid to cover your expenses for the abduction case. The legal aid may, for example, cover any expenses for translation of relevant documents for the case.

You can only apply for legal aid if you live in Denmark and your child lived in Denmark before the abduction.