If the parent liable for maintenance lives abroad, then the maintenance must be claimed abroad. Claiming maintenance from a person living abroad is associated with various problems, among other things, it must be clarified how the income conditions and living costs there affect the amount of maintenance. Furthermore, German courts have no authority to issue instructions abroad. A request must therefore be forwarded to the country in question. There are international conventions which are intended to simplify international maintenance matters. Central authorities are responsible in almost all countries. In Germany, this is the Federal Office of Justice. However, the application is made via the local court responsible for the place of residence of the person making the application at the seat of a higher regional court. The local court provides information and advice on the possibilities of recovering maintenance abroad and what documents are required for this. Once the application has been submitted in full to the local court, it forwards it to the Federal Office of Justice after an examination. The Federal Office of Justice acts as the central authority under the AUG. It corresponds with the competent authorities abroad throughout the entire procedure and forwards your request to them. The application is made using a form which you receive from the local court and to which all the necessary documents are attached from which your claim to maintenance can be derived. For child maintenance, you will need in particular your child's birth certificate and an enforceable copy of the maintenance order. The local court will then forward your request to the Federal Office of Justice. From there, the application for the enforcement of maintenance is sent to the respective central authority of the foreign state. In general, however, the following applies: You can approach the guardianship and ask it to enforce maintenance against the parent living abroad. According to § 1712 Paragraph 1 No. 2 of the German Civil Code (BGB), the assertion of maintenance claims is one of the tasks of the youth welfare office as a guardian. In this context, the assistance officer acts as the legal representative of the maintenance-entitled child and is thus authorised to complete the application forms provided for in the context of the cross-border realisation of maintenance and to submit them to the preliminary review court. The Youth Welfare Office can also take action if it has paid advance maintenance and wishes to take recourse against the debtor abroad.