Obtaining assistance from the Central Authority for Québec in a case of abduction of a child by a parent

As the Central Authority for Québec, the Minister of Justice is responsible for ensuring that a child is returned home quickly if abducted by a parent inside or outside Québec. As a result, you can request our assistance in locating and returning your child to Québec, except in certain cases

To request assistance you must complete the following steps.

Client

Any parent whose child has been internationally abducted by the other parent.

Conditions

Your child must:

  • be aged 15 or under;
  • be since the abduction in a State designated by the Act;
  • habitually reside in Québec;
  • have been abducted after the Act is in force with the other State.

The other parent must have violated your custody rights as defined in the Act.

Procedure

To request assistance, you must:

  1. complete the form Request for return of the child;
  2. produce a document in which you:

    • present the circumstances in which your child was abducted (separation, dispute between the spouses, etc.);
    • state whether or not there is a court judgment awarding custody;
    • state what steps you have taken to locate and request the return of your child;
    • explain, with reference to actual facts, why you believe that your child's security or wellbeing is in danger, if that is the case;

  3. obtain, if requested, a letter from the Director of Youth Protection stating that no report has been filed for your child and a good conduct certificate from the police;
  4. include all the required documents with your request;
  5. submit all the above documents.

All your documents must be written in French or English according to the State of destination.

However, in some cases you must have the documents translated into the language of the State where the other parent has sought refuge. If this is the case, we will indicate the language into which the documents must be translated.

Documents required

You must include the following documents with your request:

  • a copy of airline tickets;
  • a copy of your child's birth certificate;
  • a copy of your marriage certificate;
  • a photograph of your child;
  • a photograph of the other parent;
  • a list of the people you know (grandparents, other relatives, friends, neighbours, etc.) who may be able to help locate the child and a good conduct certificate from the police;
  • any other document produced by an organization (school, daycare, medical clinic, etc.) containing information that may support your request.

If the following documents exist, you must include them with your request:

  • a copy:

    • of the homologated agreement on rights of access you reached with the other parent before the abduction;
    • of the court judgment about the custody of your child or a request for a chance of custody before the abduction;

  • a copy of all the documents you have received because your former spouse has applied to the courts to obtain custody of your child in the country where the child is located;
  • a copy of any warrant for the arrest of the other parent that has been issued by the police;
  • expert reports produced during custody proceedings.

Costs

There is no charge for the services we provide.

Of course, if you begin court proceedings, you will have to pay your lawyer. However, you should contact us first to find out if the State where your child is located:

  • offers the services of a lawyer free or charge; or
  • recognizes your eligibility for the legal aid offered by that country. 

Time limit

You can file a request for assistance at any time.

Child retained in Québec

In some cases, we can also intervene if a child who habitually resides in a State designated in the Act is retained in Québec. For more information, contact the Central Authority for your State.

Useful links

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