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  • Avoiding detention before return for unaccompanied children in EU Member States
  • Portugal
  • However, in contrast, in several (Member) States UAMs cannot be detained whilst awaiting return (Belgium, Bulgaria, Estonia, France, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Lithuania, Portugal). Belgium and France do no detain UAMs awaiting return except in the following situations:
    In Belgium, UAMs who arrive at the border and whose age is doubtful can be held in detention for three working days;
    In France, UAMs apprehended at the border and refused entry are put in a waiting area before their departure for a maximum of 20 days. As mentioned above, the return of the UAMs must take into account the best interests of the child. In practice, this return procedure is rarely implemented.
    In Germany, the possibility of detaining an unaccompanied minor before return differs across Federal Länder: whilst some Länder do not allow detention of UAMs, other set a lower age limit for detention of children (14-16 years depending on the Länder), or allow for detaining a UAM only if s/he has a criminal record.
    In the Slovak Republic, UAMs are never detained.
  • Law
  • Placement Options
  • Case resolution
  • Returnees / Deportees
  • Unaccompanied and Separated Children
  • Transit