The law says both legal parents have equal rights to custody of their child. But if you do not have a court order, you cannot make the other parent give the child back, unless the child is not safe.

The police may

  • go to the other parent’s house to check on the parent and the child, and
  • work with you and the other parent to make an agreement about sharing the child—but if the child seems safe and there is no domestic violence in the other parent’s home, the police cannot make the other parent give back the child.

You would have to

  • work it out with the other parent, or
  • ask the court for a custody order to get the child back.

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