What are the Consequences of Kidnapping Your Own Child?

There are many reasons why people kidnap their children. Some parents do it to keep their children away from an abusive spouse or family member. Others do it because they believe that the child’s other parent would not take good care of them. However, the consequences of kidnapping your child can be severe, and you should be careful to avoid them.

What is Parental Kidnapping?

Parental kidnapping is the unlawful removal of a child by one parent without the other parent’s consent who has been awarded custody. It is sometimes called “wrongful removal” or “wrongful retention.” In certain parental kidnapping circumstances, a person may also be charged with parental abduction if a parent permitted them to take their child but failed to return the child after a specified period.

Parental abduction can often occur during divorce proceedings, when one parent does not agree with the divorce, or if there is an ongoing dispute between parents about their children. If you are facing these issues, it’s important to know your rights and responsibilities as both parents to resolve your situation as quickly as possible to minimize any harm to your family members.

What is International Parental Kidnapping?

A parent commits the act of international parental kidnapping, which is also referred to as “child abduction,” when they take their child or children out of the country without the permission of the other parent. It is a federal crime, and the maximum sentence that you could receive is three years in the Federal Bureau of Prisons.

This type of abduction can be done for many reasons, such as to escape the law or to gain custody of the child. These abduction cases often involve minors taken abroad by their parents, who can also include adults, their relatives, or kidnap acquaintances.

In some cases, it’s hard to determine whether an abduction has occurred due to cultural differences between countries and how domestic courts handle child custody issues. However, many countries have laws against abducting children for any purpose whatsoever. Therefore, anyone traveling abroad with their children must always bring documentation showing where they’re from and why they’re taking them there, just in case something happens unexpectedly during travel time across borders.

What Are the Consequences of Parental Kidnapping?

Parental abduction is a serious crime, and, as such, it is punishable by law. Depending on the circumstances surrounding the kidnapping, the penalties can vary significantly.

Arrest Record with Felony or Misdemeanor

Kidnapping may be charged as a felony or misdemeanor, depending on the circumstances. While many states have laws in place to protect children from parental abduction, the consequences of kidnapping are often more severe if the kidnapping crosses state lines.

Unnecessary Exposure to Danger

When a parent kidnaps a child, they are exposed to unnecessary danger. Parents who kidnap their children often do so because they feel they have no other option. They may not have access to proper legal resources and support services, so they don’t know how else to resolve the conflict.

Community Service Hours

One of the most common consequences is community service hours, which a judge may impose as part of a sentence for parental kidnapping. Community service hours are typically set at 100 per day and must be completed within six months of sentencing.

Required Psychological Treatment

The consequences of parental kidnapping depend on its psychological impact on the child.

Children whom a parent kidnaps must go through a healing process and come to terms with what happened. The family’s healing process can take several months to several years, depending on how long they were in the kidnapper’s custody and how far from their home they were taken.

When a parent kidnaps a child, they may experience post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, anxiety, or other mental health issues. They may also have trouble forming relationships or trusting others because they feel like no one will keep them safe.

Jail Time

It’s possible that you could go to prison if you’ve been accused of kidnapping a parent. Sentence length is determined by the nature of the crime committed and the defendant’s prior record.

Generally, parental kidnapping is considered a “felony.” Therefore, if you are convicted of parental abduction, you could serve up to 3 years in prison. However, some circumstances could lead to more serious charges and even more severe punishments.

Loss of Future Custody Rights

The most immediate consequence of parental kidnapping is the loss of future custody rights. In many cases, once a child has been kidnapped by one parent and subsequently returned to another, the courts will not allow the kidnapper to have access to the child. This means that if you are trying to gain custody or visitation rights, you may not be able to do so if you were involved in a parental kidnapping incident.


Abduction is a severe criminal offense. In addition to emotional distress, kidnapping can have long-lasting effects on the child’s health and well-being. The consequences of parental kidnapping vary depending on whether the child was abducted by a biological parent or a non-parental caregiver. In both instances, however, there are lasting consequences for the abducted children.

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