If you are concerned that your child may be at risk of abduction, contact us immediately. If you suspect that your child may have already been abducted, contact us immediately. Do not hesitate.
Legal advice will never remove the worry you’ll always feel for your children, but it can help you do your best to protect them. That’s why our Children Law specialists use the full force of the law and the resources available to us to take urgent and effective action.
We work with the police, the Courts, the Child Abduction Unit within the Ministry of Justice, Interpol and a raft of specialist organisations globally to either prevent abduction in the first place or to secure the safe return of your child.
How we can help
If you are concerned that there is a real and imminent risk that your child may be removed unlawfully from the UK, we can take a number of steps:
- Application for a Prohibited Steps order, Residence order, Specific Issue order and/or Parental Responsibility order, preventing the removal of the child from the UK and the possible surrender of the child’s passport
- Placing restrictions on contact or travel
- Alerting the Passport Agency and Embassy to prevent the issuing of new passports or visas
- Alerting ports, airports and border agents and circulating a picture and details of the child at risk
Where abduction is already suspected we can respond appropriately according to the circumstances:
- If your child has been taken to a country within the European Union, a country that has signed up to the Hague Convention or that has entered into an agreement with the UK, we can liaise with the appropriate organisations including the International Child Abduction and Contact Unit to seek that your child is returned.
- If your child has been taken to a country where no such legislative safeguards exist, we can make an application for an order for Wardship. We can then seek various orders to try to locate your child and secure your child’s return, such as the High Court Tipstaff being appointed, foreign Embassies being invited to assist, an order for passports to be seized on re-entry to the country, freezing of assets, declarations of habitual residence and wrongful removal etc.
2 steps to contacting Howells:
We’ll listen carefully to you, clarify what you’re trying to achieve, and then explain if and how we can help you. We will take some initial information and liaise with a legal professional regarding your case. If it looks like we can help, we will book you in for a consultation with a legal professional.
The Child Abduction team
The Child Abduction team are part of the Children Law department at Howells.
The Howells team is one of the best in the country. It has been consistently highly ranked for family work in the north, and is overseen by the hugely respected and much admired Alyson Siddall. Alyson has developed a group of many talents but with shared values. Tough and resolute in their legal representation, sensitive and compassionate in their client relationships, the team understand that they’re not dealing with ‘cases’ but with people, not bound up in legal process but in real lives.
Howells was highly ranked as a law firm for Family Law by Chambers UK 2018. The prestigious guide said Howells is “Increasingly active in dealing with high net worth cases and child abduction cases over the past year. Bolstered by a designated mediation and collaborative law group.”
The Legal 500 2018 ranks the Family department highly and states that “Howells handles the full spectrum of matrimonial work and children law matters. Alyson Siddall is ‘hugely experienced but always still keen to learn’, and heads the department which benefits from individuals based across Sheffield, Rotherham and Barnsley. Siddall is regularly instructed in complex financial arrangements and has additional expertise in private children matters and collaborative law. Sharon Lockwood is another key name to note for financial work, while Sarah Walker is highlighted for childcare matters.”