Finding an Attorney in the U.S.
Parents are encouraged to consult with an attorney to understand their legal options if they fear their child will be abducted, their child has been abducted to or wrongfully retained in the United States, or they are seeking access to a child in the United States. Attorneys can provide parents with valuable guidance and advice in these cases.
If a child has been abducted to the United States from a Hague Abduction Convention country:
The following organizations are not in any way affiliated with the U.S. Department of State. Inclusion on this list does not necessarily represent an endorsement by the U.S. Department of State. The U.S. Department of State assumes no responsibility or liability for the professional ability or reputation of, or the quality of services provided by, the organizations listed below. Information is subject to change at any time, without notice .
- State bar associations and some national bar association are listed here.
- The American Bar Association's lawyer referral map/directory is available here
- American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML) available here
- International Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (IAML) available here
- Family Abduction: Prevention and Response (6th Ed) (see pp. 26-30 for information on finding attorneys)
- Foreign Embassy/Consulates: You may also seek assistance in locating U.S. attorneys from the country's foreign embassy or consulate in the United Stated, which may maintain lists of attorneys: for list of attorneys look at Country Specific Information websites.
Organizations that may provide Legal Services for Free or for a Reduced Fee
The following organizations are not in any way affiliated with the U.S. Department of State. Inclusion on this list does not necessarily represent an endorsement by the U.S. Department of State. The U.S. Department of State assumes no responsibility or liability for the professional ability or reputation of, or the quality of services provided by, the organizations listed below. Information is subject to change at any time, without notice.
- Legal Aid click here
- Legal Services Corporation (LSC): Provides grants to local aid organizations in every jurisdiction in the U.S. is available here. Pursuant to 45 CFR Sec 1626.10(e), LSC grantee organizations may provide legal services to indigent foreign nationals who seek assistance pursuant to the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction and the Federal implementing statute, the International Child Abduction Remedies Act, 42 U.S.C 11607(b), provided they are otherwise financially eligible.
- The Hague Domestic Violence Project available here.
- Law School Clinics: A law school in your area may operate a law clinic able to help.
- U.S. Department of Defense legal assistance. If you are a member of the armed services or a family member, you may be eligible for legal assistance. Contact Military OneSource at 1-800-342-9647 or click here.
Mediation is a process in which the parties agree to work with a professional mediator, to generate an agreement acceptable to both parties. Mediation can take many different forms, depending on the location and preference of the parties. You can find more information on mediation here.
What You Can Do
Contact the Authorities
Learn about the Hague Abduction Convention
State Departments Role
Steps You Can Take on Your Own
What is the Hague Abduction Convention
Explore Your Legal Options
Prepare for Reuniting with Your Child
The State Department's Role
Steps You Can Take on Your Own
Office of Children's Issues at the U.S. Department of State
Country officers are available to speak with you Monday - Friday, 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. For assistance with an abduction in progress or any emergency situation that occurs after normal business hours, on weekends, or federal holidays, please call toll free at 1-888-407-4747. See all contact information.