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German Law/Can Germans Take US Passport



I have a child out of wedlock with a German national here in Germany. The Mother did not give me sorgerecht but signed for my childs US passport which he now has. We have seperated and she keeps demanding The US passport. Can they take the childs passport from me?

Dear S.,

If the mother has sole custody you are not allowed to take the child to the US without the mother's permission. So I guess the mother is worried that you could take the child to the US as long as you have a US passport for the child.

You should be allowed to keep a US passport for your child as long as you follow German and international law. If the mother is not giving her permission to take the child for a visit to the US my partner from Munich and I would be glad to file for visitation rights at the local German court.

Normally you don't need to give the US passport to the mother. But if the US passport restricts your visitation rights because the mother is to worried about it I would advice you to give it to the mother until the child turns 16 years old. Afterwards the child can decide on his/her own if he/she wants to visit you in the in the US.

You can contact me directly at if you have further questions and concerns.

Carolin Schulz-Burgess
German Attorney at Law/Foreign Legal Consultant

German Legal Services
306 South Walker Street
Columbia, SC 29205
Tel. +1 803 254-8153
Fax +1 803 753-9295

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Carolin Schulz-Burgess


German legal issues on inheritance, divorce, alimony, child custody and support, last wills and testaments, and other problems involving international family and civil law.


I am a certified German laywer with professional experience in both German and American law firms. Since 2001 I have been working independently at my firm, German Legal Services. I have represented hundreds of clients on matters involving US-German legal issues. One of my firm's areas of specialization is in divorce and child support and custody issues between members of the U.S. Armed Forces and German civilians.

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I received my undergraduate and JD degrees both from the University of Wuerzburg, Germany, whose law school is consistently ranked in the top 10 in Germany.

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