Call for a Free Consultation: 631-923-1910
Select Page

Parental Kidnapping on Long Island — What Is It?

by | Apr 16, 2019 | child custody and support, divorce, News and Events

It’s a fear many parents have when sharing custody of their child with their ex — will their ex kidnap their child? Will they refuse to bring them back at the appointed time after visitation? Will they take the child out of state? Parental kidnapping is a serious issue that is important to understand when you and your spouse divorce and you will be sharing custody of your child in some capacity. Here’s what you need to know and what your legal options are if your child is taken by your ex.

Divorce Attorney Consultation

What Is Parental Kidnapping?

Kidnapping, by its most basic definition, is the unlawful act of taking a person without their consent, usually by fraud or force. Parental kidnapping is a little different, however, two critical components remain the same — it’s unlawful, and it’s without consent. In this case, the consent of the custodial parent is what is being violated, since children cannot legally provide consent themselves.

The most common example of parental kidnapping is when the non-custodial parent does not return the child after visitation. They may use the child as leverage to threaten the custodial parent. Another common example would be the custodial parent refusing to provide the child for visitation when the non-custodial parent has visitation rights.

Proving Parental Kidnapping

If your ex has taken your child and you believe it to be a situation of parental kidnapping, you need to be able to prove the following:

  • Your child was under the age of 18 at the time they were taken
  • Your ex did not have the right to custody at the time the child was taken
  • Your ex willfully and maliciously took and kept your child away from their primary custodian

If any of these elements do not exist, it’s possible — and arguably probable — that the charges would be dismissed. For example, parental kidnapping cannot occur if the child is 18+ years old. If they are kidnapped and even if it is their parent that does so, it would be a case of criminal kidnapping under New York law. If your ex had rights to the child, such as if it was legally their time for visitation, they cannot be charged with kidnapping. Willful intent must also exist.

Can Parental Kidnapping Be an Accident?

In some cases, an individual may be charged but not all elements are in place to prove the crime exists. For example, your ex may not have meant to take the child. They may have forgotten the arranged drop-off time. Or, you may not intend to kidnap your child by taking them out of state, but your ex (presuming they have legal rights to the child) files a motion against you for kidnapping because you did not make them aware nor did they agree for their child to be taken out of state. Many charges of parental kidnapping end up being accidental simply because the parent wasn’t aware of the laws governing the situation.

Contact Our Long Island Divorce & Family Law Firm for Help With Your Parental Kidnapping Case

If your child was taken by your ex and you believe it to be a case of parental kidnapping, you do have legal options available to you. It’s critical to consult with a divorce and family law attorney attorney to learn more about your rights and what your next best move is. Once the child is back in your care, you’ll also need to take legal steps to keep it from happening again. We can help — contact our experienced Long Island divorce lawyers and family law attorneys today for a free consultation by calling 631-923-1910.

 

SCHEDULE YOUR FREE CONSULTATION TODAY
Call 631-923-1910 or fill in the form below

Schedule your complimentary consultation and case evaluation with our experienced attorneys today. When you call, you’ll speak to our friendly Client Services Director, who will be able to answer your general questions and set up your appointment with an attorney who specializes in your unique case.

At your meeting, your attorney will describe the many options available and determine together which is the right solution for you. By the end of this meeting we’ll all understand how we can best help you to move forward.

No Cost or Obligation

There is no cost or obligation for this initial consultation. It is simply an opportunity for us to get to know each other, answer your questions and learn if Hornberger Verbitsky, P.C. is right the right law firm for you. Give us a call at 631-923-1910 or fill in the short form below to schedule your free consultation and case evaluation.

All Fields Are Required

divorce questions answered

 

 

Child Support & Spousal Maintenance Tools
Spousal Maintenance Calculator
Child Support Calculator

 

 

Reviews

  • I have known Robert for more than 8 eight years. Robert has represented many of my family and friends. Each and every one has raved about Robert’s professionalism and expertise. He is knowledgable, friendly and truly cares about his clients. I would not hesitate to continue to refer Robert and his firm in the future!
  • I’ve known Robert for most of my life, and feel very fortunate that I have been able to turn to a good friend for various kinds of legal advice. He is very intelligent, straight forward, and professional. Most importantly though, Robert always finds the fastest resolution, and will not waste your time or money. He is NOT in the habit of dragging things through litigation if there is no need for the added expense. I have referred a few of my friends to Robert, and they have all been more than satisfied in their experience with him. Highly recommend!!

 

 

Long Island Divorce Guide

* indicates required




 

Robert E. Hornberger, Esq., P.C. respects your right to privacy. We will never sell your information to any third party. Follow this link to read our full privacy policy.

 

Divorce Lawyer Long Island New York