There are about 200,000 parental abductions of children in the US annually. The majority arise out of child custody disputes.
Many of these abductions last for years.
And while one parent of each child worries and waits, there is one, often overlooked resource that may know where these abducted children are: the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).
Just because someone abducts their child doesn’t mean that they don’t file and pay their taxes. Or claim the child dependency tax deduction for the child they abducted.
In fact, according to one study, about a third of parental child abductors do.
Which makes the IRS privy to where the abducting parent and abducted child live. And in a position to help the other parent bring their abducted child home.
But the IRS generally isn’t talking.
It seems taxpayers have privacy rights. Even if there’s a felony warrant out for them.
There are limited exceptions. But they require a federal crime and a court order from a federal court.
Yet most child abductions are state crimes, investigated at the state level. And most federal judges wouldn’t enter such an order anyway.
The only reason the other parent may find out that the IRS has information about their abducted child is when the IRS disallows their own claimed child dependency tax deduction, because their child’s other (abducting) parent has already claimed the one allowed deduction for their child.