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Child Abduction Regulations in Cyprus

Parental care is the right and duty given to both parents, to take important decisions concerning the life of their children.  In Cyprus, parental care is regulated by Law 216/1990. Based on the provisions of this Law, both parents have the right to have a contact with their children.  Additionally, the Law 216/1990 regulates issues related to parental care and divorce, i.e. contact between children and parents.

In the case of international couples, one of the parents may decide to leave the country together with the children.  Nevertheless, none of the parents can travel together with the children without the consent of the other parent.  That is to say, if the one parent left the country together with the children, without other parent’s consent, then, this action is considered as child abduction, based on the Hague Convention on Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction.

As a result, you may launch legal proceedings against your current or ex-husband/wife/partner if:

  1. He/she left the country together with the kids, without your consent.
  2. You gave him/her your authorization to go on holidays with the kids, but he/she never returned or he/she prolonged the agreed period for a visit to a foreign country.

By the time the legal proceedings are launched in the country where the children were abducted, the Courts of that country will order the children to be returned.

In addition, it is recommended to include your children’s names in the stop-list.  As a result, your current or ex-husband/wife/partner will not be able to leave the country together with the children, without your permission.

Hague Convention on Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction:

According to article 1, the objectives of the Convention are[1]:

1.       “to secure the prompt return of children wrongfully removed to or retained in any Contracting State
2.       to ensure that rights of custody and of access under the law of one Contracting State are effectively respected in the other Contracting States”.

The Hague Convention on Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction is applicable in Cyprus because Cyprus is a signatory to the Convention.  Based on article 6 of the Convention, in case your current or ex-husband/wife/partner has abducted your children, then you may file an application through the designated Central Authority.  In Cyprus, the Designated Authority is the Minister of Justice and Public Order.

What you should do:

Firstly, you should immediately go to the police and seek a professional legal support. Our family lawyers will assist you with the necessary legal procedures so that to help you to get your children back. Secondly, you should avoid sharing information with unnecessary parties.  In other words, it is advisable to share information only with your lawyer and state authorities.

In order to support your case properly you will need to prove that:

  • You are the legal guardian.
  • Your children’s residence is Cyprus.
  • You have not given your consent to your current or ex-husband/wife/partner to leave the country together with the children, or he/she prolonged the agreed period for a visit to a foreign country without your permission.

How can we help you:

In case, your current or ex-husband/wife/ partner abducted your children, then contact the family law of Michael Chambers & Co. LLC.  Our lawyers will examine your case thoroughly so that to provide you an adequate legal support.  If you wish to speak to one of our lawyers in absolute confidence, then contact us: info@chambers.law

Author: Michael Chambers, Founding Partner of Michael Chambers & Co. LLC


[1] Retrieved on 10th February 2016: https://www.hcch.net/en/instruments/conventions/full-text/?cid=24