If you’re like most parents, there is no one you care for more than your children. You want to protect them and keep them safe from harm. This becomes a challenge when you suspect that your co-parent is a risk to take your child out of the state or country. Having your ex-spouse take your child out of the country without your permission may be scary because you fear for when you’ll see your child again.
You’re not helpless
Situations like these are serious but the good news is that you can take a proactive approach to protect your family. Florida law offers several tactics for keeping your child in the state or country. To take advantage of the protection the law affords you, you must provide “competent substantial evidence” that your co-parent is a threat to remove your child out of the state or country without your consent.
With substantial evidence, you have several options to have a court impose legal deterrents for removing your child without your consent. These options include:
- Having a judge order that a parent may not remove a child from the state without notarized written consent of both parents.
- Having a judge order that a parent may not remove a child from the country without notarized written consent of both parents.
- A judge’s order that your co-parent may not take your child to any country that has not joined The Hague Convention, which is a treaty that works to fight the abduction of children.
Additionally, courts can enforce restrictions on your child’s passport, require your co-parent to provide you with an itinerary and contact phone numbers when they travel across state lines with your child.
Protect your child with a proactive approach
Parenting is challenging enough without worrying about your child disappearing. These situations are complicated if your child has family outside the United States that you don’t want to keep them from seeing. While legal deterrents don’t offer guarantees, it’s good to have those protection in place to make someone think twice before taking your child out of the country without your permission.