The opinion of the court was delivered by: Surrick, J.
Presently before the Court is Petitioner Victoria Jane Axford's Expedited Ex Parte Motion for Expedited Service and Surrender of Passports and Travel Documents. (Doc. No. 2.) For the following reasons, the Ex Parte Motion will be granted.
On June 29, 2009, Victoria Jane Axford ("Petitioner") filed a Verified Petition for Return of Child to Petitioner (Doc. No. 1) seeking the return of her minor child, Morgan Lee Axford ("M.A."), to England pursuant to the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction (the "Hague Convention"), T.I.A.S. No. 11,670, 1343 U.N.T.S. 89 (Oct. 25, 1980).*fn1 Petitioner alleges that M.A. is residing in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, with Mark Stephen Axford, the child's biological father, and with Roxy Rookstool, the wife of Mark Stephen Axford (collectively, "Respondents"). To date, Respondents have not been served with the Verified Petition. Petitioner filed the instant Ex Parte Motion asking the Court (1) to direct the United States Marshals Service to effect service of the Petition; (2) to direct the United States Marshals Service to confiscate the passports of Respondents and the minor child; (3) to prohibit Respondents from leaving the jurisdiction of the Court with the minor child pending resolution of this matter; and (4) to schedule a hearing on the Petition. An ex parte hearing was held on July 7, 2009. Petitioner, who is a citizen of the United Kingdom and who resides in England, testified at the hearing by telephone. Petitioner offered the following facts in her testimony and in the Verified Petition.
A. Relationship between Petitioner and Respondent Mark Stephen Axford
Petitioner has lived her entire life in England. On December 18, 1993, Petitioner and Respondent Mark Stephen Axford married in England. Petitioner gave birth to a son, M.A., on November 9, 1995. Respondent Mark Stephen Axford is M.A.'s biological father. The couple divorced on October 25, 1999. M.A. is now thirteen years old and suffers from autism. As a result of the autism, M.A. has difficulty communicating and interacting in social situations. Petitioner has no other children.
Since the couple's divorce in 1999, courts in England have entered numerous orders that govern custody of M.A. The most recent order is a Contact and Residence Order dated July 10, 2007, as amended August 1, 2007, from the Yeovil County Court.*fn2 (See Doc. No. 1, Ex. H.) The amended Contact and Residence Order provides as follows:
BY CONSENT IT IS ORDERED THAT
1. The Child . . . shall reside with the mother and father under joint residence order as follows:
A. (i) During school terms [the child] shall reside with his mother from Monday after school until the start of school on Friday.
(ii) During school terms [the child] shall reside with his father from for the balance (ie) from Friday after school until the start of school on a Monday.
(iii) On the last Sunday of the month during these times, the mother shall collect [the child] at 10:00 a.m. and [the child] shall reside with her from then until Friday after school whereupon the pattern shall resume as above.
(Doc. No. 1, Ex. H.) The amended Contact and Residence Order also provides that Respondent Mark Stephen Axford shall not administer certain medicines to M.A.:
The father shall be prohibited from administering to [M.A.], without the mother's consent, any drug or medicine other than either prescribed by [M.A.'s] GP or other UK registered Medical Practitioner, or any over-the-counter medicines readily available in standard UK pharmacies. (Doc. No. 1, Ex. H.) This provision was in response to Respondent Mark Stephen Axford's ...