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Cathy Meyer

Can My Wife Take The Children If She Leaves?

By September 1, 2010

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Question: Can My Wife Take The Children If She Leaves?

My wife says she is leaving and taking our children. Can she legally take my children with her when she leaves?


No, as long as the two of you are married you have the same legal rights to your children that your wife does. Tell her to go but she has to leave the children with you. Married couples have joint legal custody and joint physical custody of their children until and unless the court determines otherwise.

I have two suggestions for you:

  1. Consult an attorney before she has the opportunity to file for a divorce. You need an attorney who will file a petition for custody and an access order. Doing this will mean you filing for divorce but, it will always mean you protecting your legal rights as a father.
  2. Have your attorney try to come to a written agreement with your wife's attorney regarding the children. The agreement should cover...post continued
September 6, 2010 at 6:47 pm
(1) SheCanLeaveAndDid says:

If she runs to another state before you file for divorce and claims abuse, she can certainly run away with the children. The courts in the other state will seek to protect the children “out of an abundance of caution”. You will have to hire an attorney and spend oodles of money you may not have just to clear your name.

I know, because it happened to me. Thank God, it only took 13 months, but I have my children back and they ALL live with me. The mother is still in California licking her wounds. However, that lesson came at a pretty price. I owe so much money it’s sick.

Please note that the UCCJEA (Uniformed Child Custody Juridictional Enforcement Act) protects you from this, BUT ONLY if you have filed for divorce. Notice that Cathy said you need to find an attorney. She wasn’t kidding with that advice. Do it and do it now. Put your feelings aside in this matter and realize what is best for the children – TWO PARENTS! Obviously, your soon-to-be Ex doesn’t feel that way, otherwise they wouldn’t have threatened to leave with the kids in the first place. Do you and your kids a favor and DO IT NOW! If you wait, you will only regret. You must strike while the iron is hot.

October 4, 2012 at 10:11 am
(2) Lolo says:

I live in State of IL. I suspect that my husband is having an affair due to 30 pages of phone calls he has placed to this woman over the last 2 yrs. Can I take my children away ,maybe to another country? He is a great father and provider however? Thank you for your input.

April 6, 2013 at 1:25 pm
(3) Mo says:

No, I love my kids, and I do believe you husband do the same… even he has affair I don’t think he will ever be happy been a part from his family, specially from the kids.

Please reconsider it before you take the kids away. then again look the a better opportunity for the kids. rather be around the father than some one else.

May 19, 2013 at 2:20 am
(4) David says:

What if your wife is the abuser and the runs away with the kids and then claims abuse. 1 day. before i filed my papers in court. Now in transition house and no contact with my kids or her to serve her the court papers.

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