International Parental Child Abduction

If a U.S. citizen child has just been abducted, please call the German police at 110 and contact the Office of Children’s Issues (24 hours a day) at 1-888-407-4747 (from the U.S. and Canada) or +1 202-501-4444 (from outside the U.S. and Canada).

Germany and the United States have been treaty partners under the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction (Hague Abduction Convention) since December 1, 1990. For in-depth information on the workings of the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction, visit the Department of State’s  International Parental Child Abduction Page.

Parents are strongly encouraged to contact the
 Office of Children’s Issues for assistance prior to initiating the Hague process directly with the foreign Central Authority.

The Office of Children’s Issues is available to answer your questions regarding preventing and resolving international parental child abductions during regular business hours (8:15 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. ET) at 1-888-407-4747 (from the U.S. and Canada) or +1 202-501-4444 (from outside the United States).

Click here for specific information on child abduction issues in Germany.

The embassy and consulates in Germany maintain a list of local attorneys and will monitor the welfare of children involved in custody disputes when the child is in Germany.

If you are concerned about your child being abducted, check out the prevention tips.

As a prevention measure, the Department of State requires that both parents consent to the issuance of a minor (under age 16) child’s passport. Parents involved in child custody disputes who wish to be notified if an application for their child’s U.S. passport is submitted may also ask that their child’s name be entered into the Children’s Passport Issuance Alert Program (CPIAP).

Last Updated: October 21, 2020