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My illegal immigrant spouse (mexico) is emotionally abusive and threatens to snatch our US citizen son, and take him to Mexico.

Lancaster, OH |

I want a divorce, as I can't handle his abuse anymore. I am a college student, pursuing a degree , and don't have a ton of spare money around. I do work though. My parents have been kind enough to let us (me, husband, and son) live rent free while I work on my degree. He says that the courts would never let me have my son because I don't work 40 hours a week, even though I have been essentially the only one to take care of our son. I take him to doctors appointments, give him medicine when he's sick. Basically, ensuring he has everything a two year old needs and more. I am an excellent mother and always strive to do what is best for my son. Would the courts really take my son from me because I don't work full-time? He says either way, he'll take my son and I'll never see him again.

Our son dislikes him as well, because he purposefully makes our son cry and picks on him because he thinks it is "funny". A 35 year old man should not be behaving like that to any child, let alone his own son. He is constantly putting me down, calling me lazy because I cannot work full time while going to school. There has also been instances where he has raised his hand to me and come very close to slapping me in the face. This has to stop. I cannot allow this to continue, for my and my son's sake. Just to clear things up, I am a US citizen.

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Attorney answers 4


This sounds like a question for a domestic relations attorney, and not an immigration attorney.

Are you also not a U.S. citizen? If not, are you worried about the impact of the deteriorating relationship on your own status, or lack of status? Or are you wondering about possible immigration benefits related to the abuse? What is the immigration aspect of your questions?



I am a US citizen, he is illegal. He tells me that even though he is illegal, he can still take our US citizen son away, and the courts wouldn't care. I didn't know if this was true, as doesn't my son need papers to even go to Mexico? Or at least a visa? Wouldn't he be an Illegal living in Mexico if he doesn't have papers? My spouse says it is legal to do so, but I was under the impression my son would need to essentially immigrate to Mexico to even live there. I'm sorry. I don't honestly know any of this.


1. Call the police and report him,
2. call a domestic violence shelter or hotline and ask there advice,
3. when you are separate and safe file for divorce,
4. the courts won't take your son.

Legal disclaimer: The statement above is general in nature, as not all the facts are known. You should retain an attorney to review all the facts specific to your case in order to receive advise specific to your case. The statement above does not create an attorney/client relationship.


This is a domestic relations question, unless you are also not a citizen. Then there is the possibility of an immigraiton issue for you.

You are being subjected to abuse and what your husband is threatening is a crime called parental kidnapping. You need to get to a place that is safe for you and your child and start the process for obtaining a divorce.

If you don't have money to hire an attorney that's okay. You may be able to get some free or low cost legal assistance in your situation. This is a good place to start:

Even if they cannot help you you can always contact the local court and ask them about the *process* (they cannot tell you what the law is) for starting a divorce action pro se. Ask them if there are any self-help guides the state or court provides.

Not having money shouldn't stop you from doing what you need to do. Best of luck.



You need to call the police for you and your son's own protection when he threatens you or your son's safety....and also it creates a paper trail for when you do go to Domestic Relations court. Also, a DR court will not take your son away from you just based on not working. Also, you could call ICE and report that your spouse is an illegal alien...typically if you call the police for a valid reason and he is cited, they will typically report to ICE if they have an illegal alien in custody.

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