What can i do if my child was brought illegaly to Italy?

Guide for parents who report a case of international parental child abduction in Italy.

What can i do if my child was brought illegaly to Italy?









If your child has been brought to Italy by the other parent or another person, without your authorization, you are involved into a case of international child abduction. Pursuant to Italian Criminal Code, unless the fact constitutes a more serious offense, anyone who removes a minor from the custody of the parent exercising parental responsibility, taking or keeping him/her abroad against the will of that parent, impeding the exercise of parental responsibility, shall be punished with imprisonment from one to four years.

If the offense is committed against a minor who has reached the age of fourteen and with his consent, the penalty is the imprisonment from six months to three years. If the facts are committed by a parent, the sentence may involve the suspension of the exercise of parental responsibility. 

However, despite the international abduction is considered a crime by the Italian Criminal Code , the foreign police or judicial authorities have no power in Italy. In all cases, your Embassy or Consulate can not represent you in the court. Therefore, in order to ask for the return of the child is necessary to apply under the Italian and international law.

The most important instrument of international law is the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction. This Convention requires that the Contracting State, if there are all conditions for the Convention's application, must order the return of the child to the country where he/she was habitually resident at the time of removal. 

Italy recognizes the 1980 Hague Convention, as well as many other countries, among which the United States of America, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, Brazil, Colombia, Argentina, South Africa, Venezuela, Japan and many others). According to Italian Law, the action under Hague Convention against the parent who abducted the child will be exercised by the Attorney General of the State, but the parent who is asking for the rempatriation can be represented by a personal lawyer (foreign lawyers are not authorized before the Italian courts, because only the Italian lawyers can represent you before the Italian courts).

Italian courts don't have much expertise in international law and they prefer to apply the Italian rules, so we suggest you to be represented by lawyers with expertise in international child abduction, in order to obtain the return of your child.

If you can not locate your child, because the other parent has deny any contact, Italian and international law also provide for adequate tools for the location of the child and the protection of your rights of access.

Please, see also:

International Parental Child Abduction in Italy

Lawyers for international parental kidnapping in Italy

Legal assistance in international child abduction cases in Italy

The habitual residence of the child according to Italian Supreme Court

International parental child abduction from United States to Italy

Hague Convention of 25 October 1980 on the civil aspects of international child abduction

When the Italian court must refuse the return of abducted children

Italy increases the fight against international child abduction

Joint Custody of children in Italy

English speaking lawyers in Italy

Italian lawyers for U.S. citizens in Italy

Italian lawyers for Canadian citizens in Italy

Italian lawyers for Australians in Italy

For more information, please contact Italian Lawyers