Hastings, NE asked in Child Custody and Family Law for Nebraska

Q: If there is no legal custody set up for my child. can I be called in for kidnapping if I decide to keep my child.

I picked up my child for Christmas break and when I did, I smelled marajuana in the house that she was living in. After doing an at home drug test and it coming up positive, I have decided to have my child live with me. My child's mother is insistant that I need to return her however custody has not been established by the court. She has informed me that she will call me in for kidnapping if she is not back by a certain date/time. Will I get in trouble if I keep my child? I am concerned for her health and safety.

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1 Lawyer Answer
Julie Fowler
Julie Fowler
  • Divorce Lawyer
  • Omaha, NE
  • Licensed in Nebraska

A: It depends. It is rare for there to be grounds for a kidnapping charge to be filed against a parent of a child. If you are not legally established as the father, then there may be grounds for kidnapping. If you haven't seen your child in years, then there may be grounds. If there is an issue of the child being moved across state laws, then there may be grounds. There may be other grounds too depending on your specific situation.

If you want custody of your child and there is a custody dispute, then you should file a custody action. If you believe that there is a safety concern preventing you from feeling it is safe to return the child, then you can file for an emergency order of custody. It isn't right for a parent to just keep the child from the other parent. You should do things the right way and get a custody order in place so that the child has some time with both parents but in a safe way.

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