Child abduction

The Stephens Scown family team is independently ranked as the best solicitors for children and family law in the region.


If you have a child and are in a relationship that’s breaking down, or has already done so, one of your biggest fears might be that your partner takes the child away from you. Especially if you think your partner wants to leave the country and take the child with them.

Or perhaps you are in the UK but want to return to your own home country with your child.

Whatever your situation, what can you do to make sure you keep custody of your child?

The powers to protect your child

If you think there is a real risk of imminent abduction to your child, the sooner you act, the better. In the first instance, contact the police, who can put all air and sea ports on alert.

At the same time, seek urgent legal advice and start the legal process working in your favour. Our dedicated team of specialists are passionate about protecting children. Approachable, sympathetic and extremely knowledgeable about this are of law, our lawyers can advise you on your options and provide the information you need to make the best decision for you and your child.

For example, it may be a criminal offence if your partner removes the child without your permission. You could also obtain a court order to restrict where your child can be taken and preventing a passport from being issued.

What if your child has already been taken?

To get your child back, speed of action is essential. Success will also depend on where your child has been taken.

If it’s to a Hague Convention Country, or the European Union, the abduction should be registered with the Department of Constitutional Affairs, Child Abduction Unit. We are qualified to help you with this.

We can also liaise with solicitors in the country to which your child has been abducted.

We put you and your child first

Contact us let us show you how we can help. We’re ranked the best family law team in Devon and Cornwall by Chambers and The Legal 500, the two leading independent legal guides.

We’re also members of the Law Society’s Children Panel and the Law Society’s Family Panel – and accredited Resolution Specialists in children’s matters. Whatever expertise it takes to achieve a successful outcome, we can provide it for you.

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Family law firm of the year south 2019

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