With recent television programs, there has been a renewed interest in international parental abductions. This interest is especially peaked with the proliferation and popularity of the 90-Day Fiancé franchise and universe. If you can find out about their intentions before it happens, you do have recourse.
First steps: judiciary and Department of State
Contact your family law attorney and contact the United States Department of State, Bureau of Consular Affairs and the Prevention Branch, in addition to the family law court that granted the original child custody order. The DOS can start the international process, and your attorney can get the judiciary process started to get an emergency order to stop your spouse from leaving the country.
The International Child Abduction Prevention and Return Act, as well as most law enforcement agencies, will need a court order to do anything to stop your ex. The family law court can grant such a court order, and they can do so on an emergency basis.
Next step: involve law enforcement
The next steps will be to involve law enforcement. This will be your local police, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the airport police. Make sure you have your parental proof and your court order and all of the information you have about the potential travel plans, including whether they have been booked or if they are already on the move.
Contact all of the airlines
You can also contact the airlines directly. Ask for the corporate security officer or corporate security department, explain the situation, that you have parentage proof and your court order. Ask if there are any flights with your child’s name booked, and if needed, you may need to have those flights cancelled. However, it may be helpful to have law enforcement on that call with you to make sure they want you to cancel that flight. They may want that flight kept to catch them at the airport.
The key for Ann Arbor, Michigan, parents and parents across the country is stopping the abduction prior to the child exiting the country. Once the child leaves the country, it becomes much harder to get the child back, but not impossible. You have rights. Fight for them.