Kidnapping My Own Kid??

Updated on July 29, 2011
C.L. asks from Great Falls, MT
17 answers

I have been considering for some time leaving my fiance and moving back home with my family in another state. We have never been married but is the father of our child and his name is on the birth certificate. my question is what rights does he have as a father? can i move to with my daughter to another state? or can he have me arrested for kidnapping?! I would definately allow him to visit her and her to visit him. I know laws vary state to state but if anyone has experience with this?? all of my family lives in another state my fiance "dragged" me here when i was preggo. biggest mistake of my life. now i feel like i am stuck here. stuck in our relationship. and stuck in this stupid state. i have no family or friends here. all of my support is back home. all i want to do is move back home to be with my family and so my mom can help take care of my daughter while i go back to school/work. oh and i forgot to mention that he told me that if i tried to leave him and move back home he would try and say i was kidnapping her. can he really do this? what are MY rights? i deserve to be happy too right? if im not happy in our current situation, how am i to be a good parent? Also i am currently living in Montana if anyone knows any state specific laws. thanks!

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answers from Oklahoma City on

The ONLY person who can answer this kind of question is an attorney who specializes in child custody. They will have the legal knowledge and be able to give you the information needed.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dover on

File for custody and have something established now. Without an agreement in place, if you move and he files first, it is possible that they could claim you were kidnapping her.

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answers from Hartford on

You have to get a lawyer. You shouldn't get any family law advice from here or any other online community and you shouldn't share any more details of your plans. I do think that once you get a lawyer you should file for custody and arrange reasonable visitation, and that could be no matter where either of you lives. I would also let your family know what you're planning, the name of your lawyer, the lawyer's phone number, and tell any neighbors that if they hear shouting or screaming coming from your place to call the police.

You should document things that your fiance (or ex-fiance at this point?) says and does that could be considered abusive or threatening to you and your child. That includes threats of filing charges against you if you ever leave him.

Right now he's using threats to control you, and he's using the one thing you care about more than anything else to keep you right where you are: your daughter. He's counting on you believing everything he says and being afraid of him. That's why you have to get a lawyer immediately.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Los Angeles on

IF there is a custody agreement you must honor that. Some do specify that the custodial parent may not move out of state without the non-custodial parent's consent.

If there is NOT an agreement you each have equal rights regarding her custody, meaning, that your fiance could rightfully go to the state you move to, take her with him back to your current state and be legally entitled, particularly since he is listed as her father on her birth certificate. Therefore, not that I presume to know what your fiance is capable of, but being proactive so as not to take a chance, I would seek a custody agreement through the court to prevent such a thing from happening.

To anyone who may think I'm an alarmist, or that I don't know what I'm talking about, I have first-hand experience. One of my children, my son, was kidnapped by his father, and hidden from me for years due to those very circumstances. To never think it can happen is unrealistic. My son has been traumatized for life, and if I could do things differently all over again for his sake, I would in a heartbeat.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from St. Louis on

It really doesn't matter what advice you get on here. I would strongly urge you to speak with a family law attorney. You will get the right answer from him/her/them. It may cost you a little bit of money, but it will be the right answer. You may also contact your local police department and ask them.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Boston on

As far as I know if there is no custody order then you can but check with a lawyer family courthouses generally have a free one available to speak with. If he tells you the same thing go and file custody in the state you will be living. I know you say you have no problem with him having visits but you need something court ordered to protect both of you and your daughter.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Pittsburgh on

He is her father. How would you feel if he up and left with her? Even if he decided it would be ok for you to come and visit her? It is one thing for you, an adult who can make these decisions to leave a relationship. It is entirely another to take your child's father away from her. And a child away from her father. You need to negotiate a custody agreement - for which you will need attorneys and a judge. You also need to consider how much travel your daughter will be doing if you share custody. If my husband decided to leave and take my son with him of course I would say it was kidnapping. Morally it is. Same for you.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Kansas City on

Ask yourself if you would like it, if he took your kids and moved to another state. Oh, but sure, he'd let you visit them and all. Would you like that? Would you think he was being fair to you? Would you like your father to live in another state and only see him a few times a year?

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

I believe that it is fine, unless a custody agreement states otherwise.You are both her parents, therefore neither parent can be charged with 'kidnapping' unless a divorce decree or judge rules otherwise. I am absolutely not trying to get in your business with a matter this important, but I would encourage you to rethink moving away from her father unless there is a very good reason. Even with the best intentions, unless you both have endless funds for airline tickets, out-of-state visitation is very difficult and may dramatically reduce the times she gets to see her father. Good luck, I hope your situation works out in the best way for all of you!

(By the way, it is worth mentioning that he could move along side you and it in no-way makes his shortened time with her your fault. I know things like this can be very tricky and it takes the both of you to figure out what's best for your sweet little one and both of you to make the hard personal decisions needed to do the best by her. Please don't take this as a bash on you, we all make mistakes and wanting to 'go home' is a powerful, powerful emotion. I don't blame you at all ;) )

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Nashville on

That is parental kidnapping !! We are going threw this with my grandson. His mom has taken him from the only family he has known since he was born . Just because you have problem's in your relationship it doesn't mean that you can just pack the child up and leave . My son has custody of his son. He has had him since he was 6 months and now he is gone. All because she didnt want to live here any more . It is really sad that people think this is good for a child. My grandson is 2 he can't call us and tell him where he is and he can't ask for help . We have not seen him in 3 weeks. So really think about your child first a child is a gift not a bargaining chip. Please pray for the safe return of my grandson Murphy !! And please think about the child and the father. The mother is not always the right choice. Farthers have rights to. My grandson's mother also has a child endangerment charge on her because she did this with her other son that she lost custody of !! You should really seek help threw counseling or go to church !! please dont rein her life because you are not happy !!


answers from Dallas on

There are laws in your state governing this type of thing- if you move them without his permission I think that is against the law and you could have your kids taken away- I don't know the exact laws on it but don't risk it. Consult a lawyer.


answers from Kansas City on

Does he know about your plans to move back? Talk to him and tell him what is going on, after you spoke to a custody agent. Find out first what your rights are. Then let your fiance know where he stands.. Hopefully you can resolve this and stay "friends" and he can still see his kid.



answers from Denver on

Talk to human services- they should be able to refer you to a custody person. You need to create a custody agreement before you move, otherwise, in most states, it is considered to be a form of kidnapping.



answers from Columbus on

Listen to JessicaWessica.


answers from Dallas on

It doesn't sound like you have any custody laid out. You both have natural custody of her since you're her parents, right? If so, there's no way he could claim you're kidnapping her if you have the RIGHT to have her.

I am not a legal person, so I think you should check into it. But I could leave with my kids and go visit family far away because I have custody and the right to do so. That's not to say that the courts couldn't rule that I have to split custody with the father. If that happened, and if I disobeyed, then I would think that would be kidnapping. But, as of yet, I don't think they can. He sounds like a control freak. I understand him not wanting his daughter to leave, but I think he's making an empty threat.


answers from Kansas City on

Before you spend a bunch of money on a lawyer, have you asked him if it's okay? Does he see her on a regular basis? If he wants to have a regular relationship with her then you are stuck.



answers from Bismarck on

My ex and I dealt with a similar issue right after my son was born. We were told that as long as there is no custody order that either of us can take the child wherever we want and the other parent would then have to file for visitation or for custody in the courts. However, if you take your child he could absolutely come take the child back. Laws are different in each state but I think you have to be a resident for 6 months before you can file anything with the courts which means if he files first you could be traveling back to deal with the court case too. Good luck.

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