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Child abduction

The abduction of a child abroad is a devastating experience for any parent. If you find yourself in this situation, we can offer help and support.

Parental child abduction

Hague Convention on International Child Abduction

This agreement between certain countries (including Ireland) aims to ensure that an abducted child is returned to the country where they normally live, so that issues of custody and guardianship can be decided by the courts of that country.

How the Hague Convention can help you

If your child has been abducted by their other parent and taken outside the State, you may be able to apply under the Hague Convention to ensure your child is returned to Ireland while the Irish courts decide on custody and access issues.

However, if your child has been abducted within Ireland, the Hague Convention doesn’t apply as it only deals with cases of inter-country abduction.

Countries not party to the Hague Convention

If your child has been abducted from Ireland and brought to a country that is not a party to the Hague Convention, you should contact a lawyer in Ireland for advice on what legal proceedings may be necessary in the Irish Courts.

Central Authority for Child Abduction

The Central Authority for Child Abduction at the Department of Justice and Equality is the national authority in Ireland for dealing with cases under the Hague Convention.

They can advise you on what to do if your child has been taken abroad without your consent.

You can contact them at:

Central Authority for Child Abduction

Department of Justice and Equality

Bishop’s Square

Redmond Hill

Dublin 2

D02 TD99

Tel + 353 1 4790200

Fax:  + 353-1 4790201

Email: internationalchildabduction[at]justice[dot]ie