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What should you do if you're worried about parental kidnapping?

There is nothing more threatening than the idea that a parent could flee with your child in tow. You do your best to make sure your parenting plan is fair, but your ex-spouse keeps saying it's not enough. You noted recently that your child has been talking about a trip, and your ex-spouse even got your child a passport. You're extremely worried.

Of course, if your ex-spouse plans to take your child out of the country, they should run it by you first. In many cases, they'll need to get approval from the court, too. However, if you have heard nothing about the trip other than snippets from your child, it's time to speak up.

What should you do if you fear parental kidnapping may take place?

If you're truly worried that your ex-spouse may flee with your child, it's important to reach out to your attorney. You need to keep documentation that supports your claim. For example, if your ex-spouse admits they purchased a passport or threatens to withhold custody time, you can submit these documents to the court for review.

If it's too late, and you believe your ex-spouse is already fleeing with your child, call the police and then your attorney. Your attorney can reach out to the court and take steps to prevent the parent from leaving the country. With authorities informed, there is a better chance of bringing your child home.

If your custody rights are violated, the court will consider adjusting your custody schedule. Parental kidnapping can lead to temporary or permanent removal of the other parent's custody rights in some instances.

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