VenezuelaOfficial Name: Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela
Embassies and Consulates
Calle F con Calle Suapure,
Urb. Colinas de Valle Arriba,
Caracas, Venezuela 1080
Emergency Telephone: 58-212-907-8400
U.S. Consular Agent - Maracaibo
Calle 77 (5 de Julio) Con Avenida 3F No. 3F-13
Sector Valle Frio
Telephone: 58-261-200-0600, 58-261-718-0843 or 58-261-718-0845
Emergency Telephone: Please contact the U.S. Embassy in Caracas.
Venezuela 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 January 1, 1997.
For information concerning travel to Venezuela, 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 Venezuela.
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 Venezuela. 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
SA-17, 9th Floor
Washington, DC 20522-1709
Outside the United States or Canada: 1-202-501-4444
The Venezuelan Central Authority for the Hague Abduction Convention is the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Ministerio del Poder Popular para Relaciones Exteriores). The Ministry of Foreign Affairs's role is to perform the duties given to central authorities under the Hague Abduction Convention, including processing Hague Abduction Convention applications for return of and access to children.
They can be reached at:
Ministerio del Poder Popular para Relaciones Exteriores
Direcci's General para Relaciones Consulares
Av. Urdaneta, Esq. Carmelitas a Puente Llaguno
Phone number: 58-212-802-8000
Website: Ministerio del Poder Popular para Relaciones Exteriores
To initiate a Hague case for return of, or access to, a child in Venezuela, the left-behind parent must submit a Hague application to the Venezuelan Central Authority, either directly or through the USCA. The USCA is available to answer questions about the Hague application process, to forward a completed application to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs; 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 the Venezuelan Central Authority. Attorney fees, if necessary, are the sole responsibility of the person hiring the attorney. 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, Venezuela. 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 Venezuela. 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
Venezuela does not offer free or reduced fee legal aid services. A public defender will be appointed to intervene in the judicial proceedings solely for the best interest of the child, not to represent either parent. A parent may retain a private attorney in Venezuela to have his or her interests represented in court.
The U.S. Embassy in Caracas, Venezuela posts 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 following persons or firms. Professional credentials and areas of expertise are provided directly by the lawyers.
We are not aware of any government or non-governmental organizations in Venezuela that offer mediation services for custody disputes.
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.