Q: Which post-divorce motion or form shall I file in order to obtain a court order for my sons passport renewal & travel ?
My name is Linda. I am divorced and am living with my 5 years old son. The divorce occurred outside USA, in Albania and the Albanian Court granted me the custody of my son for raise and education. Both myself and my son are Americans, but my ex-husband, the father of my son is not a US citizen. I am constantly trying to contact him through e-mails or phone in order to get the child consent for the US passport renewal as well as his travel authorization, but he has totally disappeared. He is not paying child support or corresponding in any way regarding our son’s needs. Therefore I need to represent myself in Pinellas county family court in order to get the travel order for my son as well as the right to renew his US passport without his father's consent, of course once the other parent disappearance is going to be established by the court. I am a Pinellas resident and can prove it. Which forms or motion shall I fill out and what procedure shall I initiate?
A: You can try applying for the passport renewal without the other parent's consent first. There is an exception when the other parent cannot be found. Otherwise you will need to "domesticate" your foreign final judgment and then file a motion for the passport issuance. Speak with a local family lawyer for more specific advice.
A: Hello Linda, I practice in Pinellas County. This is a situation where you will need to file a Petition to Domesticate and Enforce a Foreign Order. This will allow Florida to exercise jurisdiction over the matter. It is important that your son has resided in Florida for the last six months continuously prior to filing the Petition. There may be a delay if the father's whereabouts are unknown, but at some point will likely result in the order being domesticated in Florida.
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