DenmarkOfficial Name: Kingdom of Denmark
Embassies and Consulates
Dag Hammarskjölds Allé 24
Telephone: 45 3341 7100
Emergency Telephone: 45 3341 7400
Fax: 45 3538 9616
Denmark and the United States have been treaty partners under the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction (Hague Abduction Convention) since July 1, 1991.
For information concerning travel to Denmark, including information about the location of the U.S. Embassy, the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program, entry/exit requirements, safety and security, crime, medical facilities and health information, traffic safety, road conditions and aviation safety, please see country-specific information for Denmark.
Hague Abduction Convention
The U.S. Department of State serves as the U.S. Central Authority (USCA) for the Hague Abduction Convention. In this capacity, the Department’s Bureau of Consular Affairs, Directorate for Overseas Citizens Services, Office of Children’s Issues facilitates the submission of applications under the Hague Abduction Convention for the return of, or access to, children located in countries that are U.S. treaty partners, including Denmark. Parents are strongly encouraged to contact the Department of State for assistance prior to initiating the Hague process directly with the foreign Central Authority.
United States Department of State
Bureau of Consular Affairs
Office of Children’s Issues
Washington, DC 20522-1709
Outside the United States or Canada: 1-202-501-4444
The Danish Central Authority (DCA) for the Hague Abduction Convention is the National Social Appeals Board. The DCA reviews the application for completeness and forwards it to the Bailiff’s Court (Fogedretten) in the jurisdiction of the child’s residence. The DCA will forward the completed application to the appropriate court within two working days. The DCA can be reached at:
Danish Ministry of Social Affairs and Integration
Ankestyrelsen/National Social Appeals Board
Division of Family Affairs
DK-1022 København K
Telephone: +45 33 41 12 00
To initiate a Hague case for return of, or access to, a child in Denmark, the U.S. Central Authority (USCA) encourages a parent or legal guardian to review the eligibility criteria and instructions for completing the Hague application form located at the Department of State’s website and contact the Department of State for assistance prior to initiating the Hague process. The USCA is available to answer questions about the Hague application process, to forward a completed application to the DCA, and to subsequently monitor its progress through the foreign administrative and legal processes.
There are no fees for filing Hague applications with either the United States or Danish central authorities. Parents involved in Hague proceedings may obtain advice at no charge from the DCA. Additional costs may include airplane tickets for court appearances and for the return of the child, if so ordered.
A parent or legal guardian may file an application under the Hague Abduction Convention for return to the United States of a child abducted to, or wrongfully retained in, Denmark. The U.S. Department of State can assist parents living in the United States to understand whether the Convention is an available civil remedy and can provide information on the process for submitting a Hague application.
A person may file an application under the Hague Abduction Convention for access to a child living in Denmark. The criteria for acceptance of a Hague access application vary from country to country. The U.S. Department of State can assist parents living in the United States to understand country-specific criteria and provide information on the process for submitting a Hague application.
Retaining an Attorney
The DCA will automatically appoint legal representation when the Hague application is forwarded to the Bailiff’s Court (Fogedretten). Applicant parents who choose to retain the services of a private Danish attorney to assist them with ongoing Hague proceedings are responsible for all legal costs; however, a parent can apply for legal aid through the attorney if he/she cannot afford the legal fees. A private attorney should contact the DCA prior to filing a Hague return application directly with the court.
The DCA publishes a list of family law attorneys in Denmark on their website, who are specifically familiar with Hague Convention cases.
The U.S. Embassy in Copenhagen, Denmark, posts a list of attorneys, including those who specialize in family law.
This list is provided as a courtesy service only and does not constitute an endorsement of any individual attorney. The Department of State assumes no responsibility or liability for the professional ability or reputation of, or the quality of services provided by, the persons or firms included in this list. Professional credentials and areas of expertise are provided directly by the lawyers.
If desired, the parents can submit a request for mediation to the court. A judge or attorney will act as a mediator with the intent of resolving the dispute through mediation, which is free of charge. If the mediation is unsuccessful, the case will return to the court.
Do not attempt to take back your child
We strongly discourage taking matters into your own hands. The measures could be illegal and may delay your child’s return. Attempts to re-abduct your child from the United States may:
- Endanger your child and others;
- Prejudice any future judicial efforts you might wish to make in the United States; and
- Could even result in your arrest and imprisonment.
Finally, there is no guarantee that the chain of abductions would end with the one committed by you. A parent who has re-abducted a child may have to go to extraordinary lengths to conceal his or her whereabouts, living in permanent fear that the child may be re-abducted yet again.
If you are contemplating such desperate measures, we advise you to consider the emotional trauma inflicted on a child who is a victim of an abduction and a re-abduction. We discourage re-abduction not only because it is illegal, but also because of possible psychological harm to the child.
DISCLAIMER: The information in this flyer is provided for general information only, is not intended to be legal advice, and may change without notice. Questions involving interpretation of law should be addressed to an attorney licensed in the relevant jurisdiction.