When a parent suspects that the other parent (genitore) may illicitly carry away from Italy abroad their child (figlio) or he/she is afraid that the other parent may illicitly keep their child abroad (not carrying him/her back to Italy), the parent can quickly appoint an Italian qualified lawyer (Avvocato Italiano) specialized in family law, also internationally, who is able to advise him/her in connection with procedures set forth under Conventions and/or EU Regulations. It will be also essential to evaluate the position of the other parent to fully realize the grounds which caused the unauthorized expatriation. Indeed, it may be possible that, pursuant to the applicable law, there is no international child abduction, instead on the contrary the parent has the right to carry away the child and this case may find a legal protection.
Which legal “tricks” can be fulfilled to prevent the illicit child abduction
Some legal “tricks” exist and may be carried out by the parent who is afraid of suffering an international child abduction of his/her child by the other parent:
- not to authorize any journey abroad of the child as well as any release of documents for any expatriation. In case these documents would be already available for the minor, it is recommendable to file to the competent public office (Questura) a revocation of all authorizations concerning the documents of the minor, verifying that the request is inserted in the appropriate registers (liste di frontiera);
- to file to the competent Italian Court, with the legal advice of an Italian lawyer, a request a decision which may state the exact residence of the minor and which prohibits the expatriation without the previous express consent by both parents. This order can be notified also to the Police working at the borders of Italy (Polizia di frontiera);
- to receive communication of the exact address of the final destination of the child’s journey;
- to safeguard the child’s original passport and the child’s ID original document in a safe place, also at relatives’ house or at trusted third-parties;
- to get informed about family laws and regulations in full force and effect in the country of destination so to be able to act in advance, e.g. asking to the competent Authority of the country of destination to recognize the order of prohibition of expatriation (divieto di espatrio) or a decision concerning an assignment or a placement or a decision concerning the right of visit, possibly already issued by the competent Italian Court;
- to get informed about all necessary documents to be able to enter in the country of destination (e.g. if a Visa is requested it may be appropriate to file a request to the Embassy or to the Consulate of that country, with the special purpose of communicate formally the disagreement with any request of that Visa;
- to ask the other parent to undersign a declaration of commitment to come back to Italy, and the date of signature of this declaration has to be proved also by witnesses, e.g. before an Italian Notary or before an Italian qualified lawyer or before an Authority of the Consulate.
The instruments that can be triggered are several, but it is appropriate to identify the most appropriate and effective ones to each concrete case.
Marzorati Law Firm is specialised in family law, also internationally, and its lawyers usually deal with separations, divorces, child support and family support, as well as with international child abduction cases. To appoint timely an Italian qualified lawyer, specialized in family law, is essential to activate as soon as possible all the informational channels for finding the child as soon as possible as well as filing the competent authorities to decide about the child’s return. In order to advise all its clients all over Italy and worldwide, Marzorati Law Firm has also developed a network, made also of at least a barrister/solicitor, an attorney-at-law, an abogado, and an avocat à la cour, all qualified in their respective country of practice.