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What if my partner takes our child to another country without my permission?

What if my partner takes our child to another country without my permission?
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Reviewed: 
August 31, 2017
Answer

It can be very difficult to bring your child back to Canada from another country. You need to act quickly.

Sometimes, you can get help from authorities in Canada. Other times, you have to get a court order from the other country. It depends on which country your child was taken to.

You can talk to a lawyer who can give you some legal information and advice about keeping your child safe. They can explain your legal options and tell you about your legal rights and responsibilities.

If you can't afford to hire a lawyer for everything, some lawyers provide "unbundled services" or "limited scope retainer" services. This means you pay them to help you with only certain things, like getting a restraining order or drafting a court document.

If you can't afford to hire a lawyer at all, you might be able to find legal help in other places. You can also find emotional, safety planning, and housing help when leaving an abusive relationship.

If you have experienced family violence and need immediate legal help, you might be able to get 2 hours of free advice from a lawyer. This service is offered through some women's shelters, community legal clinics, and Family Law Service Centres. Or you can call Legal Aid Ontario toll-free at 1-800-668-8258 to find out more.

If you have experienced sexual abuse and live in Toronto, Ottawa, or Thunder Bay, you might be able to get 4 hours of free advice from a lawyer. You have to complete a voucher request form. Or you can call the Independent Legal Advice for Sexual Assault Survivors Pilot Program at 1-855-226-3904 to find out more.

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