Parents Taking Son to Another Country - How to Stop Them?

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20 June 2014
My Son went overseas to New Zealand with my brother to visit my parents. My parents called and told me that I will not be getting my son back. How do I prevent them from taking him out of New Zealand, also to send him back to Sydney? It's hard for me to go to New Zealand as I have four other kids to take care of and I am also a single mother. What steps and action would I need to take under family law? Can someone please advise me urgently as I don't have much time...


Well-Known Member
19 April 2014
So you're in Sydney, and your son (how old?) went with his uncle to visit his grandparents in New Zealand?
Why aren't they sending him back to you in Australia? Does your son (and brother) have a return flight booked?
What is your brother doing to help you? Do you know where your son is in New Zealand?
Do you have a parenting order or consent orders in place for your children?
Have a look at the Family Law Courts "Recovery Orders" page:
A recovery order is defined in section 67Q of the Family Law Act 1975. It is an order of the Court that can require a child be returned to a:
  • parent of the child,
  • person who has a parenting order that states the child lives with, spends time with or communicates with that person, or
  • person who has parental responsibility for the child.
A recovery order can authorise or direct a person or persons, such as police officers, to take appropriate action to find, recover and deliver a child to one of the people listed above. As well, a recovery order can provide directions about the day-to-day care of a child until the child is returned or delivered. A recovery order can also prohibit the person from again removing or taking possession of the child. In these cases, a recovery order can authorise the arrest (without warrant) of the person who again removes or takes possession of the child.
What if the child has been taken out of Australia?
If a child has been taken from Australia without your consent, or has not been returned to Australia, you should contact the Commonwealth Attorney General’s Department for assistance.

Australia has an agreement with some countries to return abducted children to their country of usual residence. The agreement is called the Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction (the Hague Convention). For a list of countries party to the convention, go to or call the Department on 1800 100 480.

There's more information on the Commonwealth Attorney General’s "International Child Abduction and Child Access" page and the "International Family Law and Children" page. I had a look and New Zealand is a Hague Convention country.
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20 June 2014
My son is 9 years old, he went with my brother to visit his grandparents. My parents told me that they are taking him back to the islands with them.

When my son was born my parents raised him til the age of 6. Due to cultural reason as he is the first boy. He was then given back to me, but they still think that they can take him whenever they want to. I have told them that things have changed, living in Sydney I have learnt so much.. My brother came to pick my son up so that he would not be alone on the plane. My brother resides in New Zealand, their tickets were one way tickets, but he said he'll purchase the return ticket in NZ. I know the address to where they are staying.