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Quick question on non-return of child with residence order in place

(14 Posts)
Gonzo33 Thu 26-May-11 15:40:17


Currently I live overseas with my husband due to his job. My son is flying back unaccompanied and will be picked up by my father from the airport. My ex husband is then going to be picking up our son from my fathers house for 3 weeks in summer leave.

If he didn't return my son to my father for him to fly back to us what recourse do I have? I do have a residence order (because of ex historically doing just this). I understand that I would need to involve the courts, but not being in the country when (if) this occurs concerns me. It is not easy for me to get back because I also have a very young daughter.


Gonzo xx

Collaborate Thu 26-May-11 15:55:26

You could use the Hague Convention to get him back. You would get free representation. I'm assuming you are in a country that is a signatory to the convention.

fuzzywuzzy Thu 26-May-11 15:58:59

Make sure your father has copies of the residence order incase he needs to go to the police for non returning of the child, things will move much faster if your father can show them the legal paperwork.

Gonzo33 Thu 26-May-11 16:19:06

Thank you Collaborate. We are in a country where I could use the Hague Convention, however am on sovereign soil. Would that make a difference?

Fuzzywuzzy, My father does hold a copy of the residence order thankfully.

Collaborate Thu 26-May-11 17:26:36

No. There is a reported case concerning a US serviceman in Iceland. The fact that he was on a US base still meant that he was in Iceland not the US.

gillybean2 Thu 26-May-11 17:34:29

It doesn't matter so much which country you are in, it matters more which country your ex is taking your ds too and where he might go from there.

I assume your ds (as he's travelling alone) is of an age he can understand what he should do if this happens. You need to be sure he knows your phone number off by heart and how to make a reverse charge call. And where he should go or who he should tell if his dad won't let him call you and doesn't return him by the date he is due back.

Your ex also needs your permission to take ds abroad. I know you/he will already be abroad but I'm thinking more if he moved on to another country. So give him a letter that clearly states the dates of the holiday in bold at the top. And then word it to say he has permission to take him for a 3 week holiday only to whichever country he is going too. Get too copies and get him to sign one for your dad to keep.

gillybean2 Thu 26-May-11 17:35:26

Also make sure you have photocopies of your ds's passport so you have all the info to hand should you need to put out an all ports alert etc.

MiraNova Thu 26-May-11 18:04:30

Also consider getting your DS a smartphone with GPS functionality on it (assuming he is old enough to use one), and install google latitude on it. This will tell you where he is - sometimes very precisely (ie within metres) or sometimes just to the nearest cell - either way it might help you feel happy that he is where he is supposed to be. This should work in most countries - just need to make sure you have data roaming (and that he doesn't rack up a huge bill using other applications!).

7to25 Fri 27-May-11 00:34:14

Just a thought, is your son leaving the UK with your permission with your ex?
If they are meant to be staying put, then could your father retain your son's passport for safe keeping?

Gonzo33 Sat 28-May-11 17:16:26

Thank you Collaborate, and everyone else. I feel better knowing I can sort this if I have to. Fingers crossed I am worrying over nothing.

I am the one that lives abroad, my ex lives in UK. My father is going to keep hold of my son's passport. No way would I let that get in my ex's hands.

I am sending my son with a mobile. Only the last time I did my ex took it off of him and refused to give it back until he dropped my son off at my Dad's. Every time I called my ex refused to let me speak with our son. My Dad also wrote down his numbers and my Mum's numbers so that my son could call him at any time, but my ex took the numbers off of him and wouldn't allow it, so my son spent 3 weeks miserable and not able to tell his Granddad he wanted to go back to his.

I am going to give my boy a phone to take with him again, and tell him to keep it hidden. Although I hate the idea of telling him to lie to his father.

perfectstorm Sat 28-May-11 18:00:23

Is he old enough to memorise your father's number now? That might give him some security, if he at least knows he can call him in a pinch as well as you, given his grandfather could come and get him if need be.

What a horrible situation. I'm so sorry.

Gonzo33 Sun 29-May-11 09:11:11

He is 10 perfectstorm so he should be able to remember it, but he has the memory of a fish when it comes to telephone numbers. Now money, that is a different matter!!!

It is a horrible situation for my son, and I really feel for him. It has been a hard 10 years because his father has never been easy to deal with, and has always bullied him to try and get what he wants. When I went to court to get leave of jurisdiction, contact and a residence order even the judge told him he had to wind his neck in.

Most of my exh's behaviour has backfired on him though because I do leave it to my son to make the decision as to whether he wants to see his father or not now (I feel he is old enough to make that decision now) and he has not wanted to for a year. My son asked if he could go back to UK to see his father, half brother & sister and spend some time with my parents, so I have booked the flights. My ex has been offered cheap flights and accomodation to come here, which his girlfriend accepted, but he cancelled.

I am sorry, I am referring to as my son, I know technically I should refer to him as "our son", but his father has not lived with him since he was 8 months old, and has not played an active role in his life. I hasten to add through a choice of his own.

My son is my life, and on this subject I feel he should now have the right to decide what he wants.

Sorry if I have blathered on!

Truckrelented Sun 29-May-11 09:19:11

If he said he wanted to now live with his Dad, would you consider him old enough to make that decision?

I'd be careful using that argument as it could backfire.

Gonzo33 Sun 29-May-11 18:53:31

I would consider it if he wanted it that much. However, given the history between the two of then I doubt he would ever want to do that. He see's his father as a selfish individual who has no time for him. He told me he wants to go back mainly to see my Mum and Dad, but knows if he does he has to see his father too.

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