For the K. family from the Kuban capital this took three years: that’s how the legal battle lasted. The civil case passed through the authorities until returning to the regional court. Since the spring, here, in the second round, the lawsuit of the Office of Family and Children’s Affairs of the city of Krasnodar against the parents of a girl was considered: the department asked to limit the mother’s parental rights and deprive the father . of them completely. And although the submitted claim was considered by the Sovetsky District Court without the participation of the father, three years ago it was fully satisfied. Since then, the baby’s blood relatives have tried to have the decision overturned and the child returned.
This is a very instructive story. The girl’s mother is a member of a large Russian family that moved to Krasnodar from Uzbekistan. Here it turned out that she is a carrier of HIV. They say that she became infected in a medical center even before arriving in the Kuban. The doctors managed to stop the negative development of the disease and the young woman got married. In mid-2018, a healthy baby was born. But when the girl was one and a half years old, there was a conflict between her parents, after which the father abandoned the family and went to work in another region, and her mother was admitted to a medical institution with depression. Left with her granddaughter in her arms, the grandmother panicked: what to do? I went to the guardianship authorities for advice. And there they offered… to send the girl to an orphanage. They say that the grandmother has no permanent job, there is no husband, so she cannot be a guardian. A solution was found: someone else’s aunt offered her services. She had an income and a spouse, but no children.
In all the activities of the regional Ombudsman for Children’s Rights, this is the first case in which adopted children are taken abroad and detained.
“The woman convinced me that she was driven by a desire to help,” says the 50-year-old grandmother. – The Department of Family and Children assured me that guardianship will be granted temporarily until I collect the necessary documents. I decided: it was better to give my granddaughter to a “kind woman” than to send her to an orphanage.
Other events unfolded quickly. At home with the potential guardian, with the participation of an official, the grandmother signed a voluntary waiver of guardianship, although she had no right to do so if she had living parents and lacked legal basis. In general, the adoptive mother began to receive benefits, and the natural parents were forced to pay alimony (10,398 rubles each). When my mother was released from the hospital and my father returned to the family, they were both shocked. Furthermore, the new “mother” almost completely interrupted her communication with the girl. For two years they tried to overturn the sentence of the Sovetsky district court. In April 2021, the Appeals Chamber of the Krasnodar Regional Court ruled in favor, but in May 2022, the Fourth Court of Cassation overturned this decision, pointing out serious violations and sending the civil case to a new trial.
The designated examination confirmed that the mother’s health allows her to raise her own daughter. In addition, the girl has other relatives, including her grandmother. Why, one might ask, was it necessary to hand it over to someone else, and even with compensation from the treasury for the child’s expenses and payment to the guardian of remuneration for the provision of educational services? The regional court took all this into account when reconsidering the case, which was conducted with the participation of the Ombudsman for Children’s Rights of the region. By a recent decision of the Appeal Chamber of Civil Cases, the Department of Family and Children’s Affairs of the Krasnodar Administration refused to satisfy the lawsuit filed in 2020 (all this time they tried to prove that they legally handed over the child to a complete stranger in the presence of blood relatives). The girl, now five years old, has finally returned to her family.
…But the mother of four-year-old Matvey, who was once temporarily placed in a foster family, does not even know where her son is now. Completely desperate, she told RG a shocking story. With the woman’s permission, we mention the names of his characters and hope that this will help find Matvey and three other children who disappeared with him.
Olga Kiryanova, a resident of the Kurgan region, was imprisoned when her son was not yet two years old. After her arrest, the child’s grandmother was paralyzed and the child was taken away by guardianship authorities. He spent several months in the Kurgan orphanage and was then sent to a foster family in Krasnodar. It remains a mystery why the baby was sent so far away in the presence of his own mother, who was not deprived of parental rights. According to the woman, who was released early from the colony in February, throughout these two years she tried not to lose contact with her son. When it turned out that he had been taken to the Kuban, I found out the phone number of his adoptive mother through the local children’s ombudsman. She turned out to be a certain Tatyana Levkovich, who at that time lived in the suburban village of Elizavetinskaya together with four adopted children. Three of them are orphans and one, Matvey himself, is a father. According to her mother, while she was in prison she called her guardian several times and asked how her son was growing up. She responded reluctantly.
“The last time we spoke was in August last year,” says Olga Kiryanova. -After that, her phone became inaccessible. In February I left the colony and prepared to go look for my son. I called the guardianship authorities in Krasnodar and sent them documents about the release. They asked me to call later. And when I did this, it was like a blow on the head: I was informed that my son was not in Krasnodar.
Now it turns out that on August 15, 2022, together with their four children, three of whom are disabled, the foster family left the Russian Federation, supposedly to undergo a medical examination. Citizen Levkovich did not notify the guardianship authorities of this until October, without specifying the time of her return. And at the end of December she announced that she was in Latvia with her children. We sent a request – it turned out that they were not and are not at the specified address.
Seeking help in finding her son, Olga Kiryanova went to the commissioner’s office in the Krasnodar Territory. The Children’s Ombudsman sent requests to all law enforcement agencies. But no one has located the children yet. As it became known, the Krasnodar Department of Family and Children’s Affairs filed a lawsuit in court for the return to the territory of the Russian Federation of children illegally detained abroad.
We can only hope that they are alive…
Tatyana Kovaleva, Commissioner for Children’s Rights in the Krasnodar Territory:
“I know these situations very well, as both mothers sought help to return their children to the family. In the first case, not only were all the documents studied, but I also personally communicated with the girl’s parents, her close relatives, visited the family at their place of residence and participated in court hearings, including on the issue to determine the order. of communication between the mother and the grandmother and the child during his residence with his adoptive mother. Furthermore, in the interest of the child, the conclusion of a conciliation agreement between the parties began. However, the blood parents still had a long road ahead of them to return their daughter to the family, which they all patiently walked together. One can only imagine the power of maternal love, which helped for three and a half years not to break, to pass not only many court hearings, but also two forensic examinations in a hospital. Of course, in such situations, blood parents need both legal assistance and psychological support, primarily from the family environment and society.
The news that Matvey, a minor, was taken out of the Russian Federation by his adoptive mother caused great concern, especially since, in addition to Matvey, his adoptive mother, whose husband is a citizen of Ukraine, was raising other children. In all the activities of the regional Ombudsman for Children’s Rights, this is the first case of foster children being taken abroad and detained. I find this unacceptable! And I believe that in order to ensure the safety of orphans and children deprived of parental care who are in foster families, as well as to prevent such cases, it is necessary to regulate at the legislative level the issue of free movement of parents adoptive with children. outside the Russian Federation in the current international situation.