What is an international child abduction?

International child abductions are difficult and complex situations, that always involve a high level of stress and uncertainty. Unfortunately, they are not at all uncommon.

Every year, dozens of children are wrongfully taken and held in Romania by abducting parents.

In short, an international child abduction occurs when a parent or a guardian with lawful care of charge of a child removes that child from his home state – the state of habitual residence –  or retains that child outside of that state, without either the legal authority or permission of a parent who has full or joint custody rights.

We can help.

We are the go-to lawyers in Romania if you find yourself in an international child abduction situation. We have an incredible trak record, having so far secured a favorable outcome in each of theese court cases we have handled since the very start of the procedure.

We are a law firm that specializes in international family law cases and, in particular, on international abduction cases regarding children that are being held in Romania. Our associates have been constantly handling cases like these since 2008, having represented dozens of clients over the years.

Also, we specialize in international divorces and custody cases, giving us great insight and knowledge on international and EU family law, without which a comprehensive strategy for international child abduction cases can not be conceived.

Therefore, we have a unique understanding of the legal process, of the emotional implications and of the high stakes that this kind of situation has for all parties involved.

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Additional services

International child abduction situations usually involve other connected lawsuits that the abducting parent registers in Romania in order to secure his/hers legal situation, as a means of defence against the international abduction claim.

In this case, it is paramount to have a unified strategy in dealing with all these adjacent applications, as these, if accepted, have the potential to make the return of the child imposible.

We can assist you in any such cases.

Meet our associates

Avocat Olac Diana Iulia

Ms. Diana-Iulia Olac is a graduate of the University of Bucharest, Law School and is a member of the Bucharest Bar since 2000.

Diana is particularly recognized for her relentless work in tough cases concerning international child abduction and for her litigation skills. Our past clients identify her unique approach as a key factor in the outcome of their cases. Currently, Diana directs the handling of all cases in the firm and is directly involved in the most complex lawsuits.

Diana frequently works with various publications, having articles and reviews published in the main newspapers in Romania, as well as in several TV broadcasts. She is also a regular contributor to one of the leading internet law journals in Romania, juridice.ro.

When not at the office, Diana spends most of her time with her family and has a keen interest in philosophy. She is also a good tennis player and an excellent swimmer.

‘I’ve always had a flair for law and I knew I wanted to be a lawyer ever since I can remember. For me, a lawyer should be someone who embodies the very best attributes that a human can ever hope to have or achieve: a sense of balance and discipline, a sence of righteousness, elegance, ingenuity and innovation but also great hunger for making right what once went wrong.

I was approached with my first international child abduction case because of my previous expertise in international Family Law and I knew, right from the start, that these are the kind of cases I wanted to handle in the future. As such, I consider myself very fortunate to have build a career representing clients in these types of situations.’

Working with us

In an international child abduction case, each of our clients should expect a high level of expertise, a customised and creative strategy, open communication with the lawyer and complete legal support.

We believe and are proud of the fact that, beside our track record and experience, these are the main arguments for working with us.

Our ultimate goal is to have a favorable outcome, in the least amount of time and with the fewest possible obstacles.

Legal services and fees

Our legal services in an international child abduction case are complete: from online consultation, to in-court representation and enforcement procedures.


For us, every case starts with a evaluation of the factual situation. We will need to know all relevant information concerning the who, where and when of your international child abduction situation. Please note that it is not relevant where in Romania is your child being held, just the fact that he is being held in this country.

This initial evaluation is done via e-mail and is free of charge.


Once we have a good understanding of the situation, we will work towards finding the best solution for your case and evaluating the costs. Usually, this can take between 1-3 days.

If you agree to work with us, all necessary legal documents can be signed via e-mail.


Usually, in an international abduction case we work for flat fees related to the specific legal steps that are mandatory in these cases, all of which will be fully explained from the beginning.

For example, there will be a flat fee for drafting and registering your application and also a flat fee for your legal representation at every court hearing.

What is required from you

In Romania, it is always best that you are present during the trial. But, this is not mandatory and it does not hurt your chances for a favorable outcome when, for practical reasons, you are not present. If, during the proceedings, we feel that, at any point, your actual presence is needed, we will inform you in time.

Second, the best chances of a favorable outcome are achieved when you are decided and sticking to specific goals and strategies for the case. More to the point, after we start, it will be imperative that you do not change your mind regarding these issues, as your chances of a good outcome will severely decrease if you abort the initial strategy.

Third, controlling emotions is a key issue in cases like these. We fully appreciate the gut-wrenching feeling that any parent will feel in an abduction case and, also, the uncertainty and stress that comes with that, but, for the sake of your child, you should always remain positive, active and energetic – for all of which, of course, we are here to help.

Last but not least, you should never attempt to return the child without proper authorisation by the courts, as this is likely to cause more harm than good form a judicial stand point.

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Essential information on an international child abduction case in Romania

Even though each international child abduction is unique, every case in Romania shares much with others:

  • Time is of the essence: you must act as quickly as possible to start the necessary procedures. The longer you wait, the harder it is to ensure that the child can be returned.
  • The legal procedure is actualy a two-step process: 1) the actual court trial, whitch determines if the child should be returned; and 2) the enforcement of the courts final decision.
  • The judicial decision from the court can be appealed only once, after which the decision will be final.
  • You can choose to start the procedure through your local government, which will ask the Romanian government to represent you via a public defender, appointed by the Bucharest Bar; this option’s main advantage is the very low cost, but it has a major downside: is usually very lengthy.
  • Alternatively, you can choose to hire a lawyer in Romania and start the procedure immediately; this is more costly, but a lot faster and, in general, the option we recommend.
  • During the proceedings, it is common for many professionals to be involved: the court case will be ruled by a judge that specialises in Family Law cases; a public prosecutor will attend the lawsuit and has the same procedural rights as any of the parties; social services workers may also be asked to attend and/or share their professional opinion regarding the child’s well being and best interest; a bailiff (or a judicial executor) will enforce the court’s decision; a mediator may be asked by one of the parties to organise a mediation procedure. Managing all this is extremely complicated when done from abroad or by a public defender, which is another reason why we encourage all those involved to procure the services of a specialized lawyer.
  • We will always recommend that you visit the child in Romania during the proceedings, if possible, as this, done right, can enhance your chances for a favourable decision.
  • Usually, the shortest amount of time needed for finalizing a case like this is 6 months after your application has been registered in court. But, depending on specific variables, the procedure can take as little as 1-2 months.

Let’s go!

Fill the form so that we can evaluate your case. This service is free of charge and the usual response time is 24h.

Is you wish to contact us directly via email, please send your request to office@biroudeavocatura.ro.

We are also available by telephone during business hours, Romanian time, at (+4)0722234576.

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