• Posted

Your child may have been counting down the days to the end of term but if you have separated from their other parent, you may be feeling anxious about whether your plans for a holiday abroad will go smoothly.

Here are our five top tips for ensuring you have nothing to worry about:

  1. Plan and agree with the other parent how to share the school holidays in advance

If you haven’t done this already, it’s worth looking at the calendar with your ex and dividing up the holidays between you. Unless there is a court order in place, you have a blank canvas on which to work out what works best for your child and each other.

  1. Provide the other parent with flight and accommodation details and contact details for whilst you are away in case of an emergency

If your ex has parental responsibility, they are entitled to this information. If there are any concerns that you might go for longer because, for example, you have family in the destination country, providing copies of return flights can alleviate fears.

  1. Obtain the other parent’s permission to take your child abroad

By law, you need to obtain permission from everyone who has parental responsibility for your child before you can take them overseas, as doing so may otherwise amount to child abduction. If a child arrangements order has been made by the court, which says that your child lives with you, you are permitted to take your child abroad for up to 28 days unless doing so would prevent your ex from spending time with your child under the terms of the order.

If your ex does not provide their consent, you would have to make an application to court for a specific issue order to obtain the court’s permission to take your child abroad.

  1. Take your co-parent’s written consent and, if your child has a different surname, take a copy of your child’s birth certificate, your marriage certificate and Decree Absolute

Some countries do not allow one parent to enter with a child without the written agreement of the other parent so it is sensible to take a copy with you. Similarly, it is wise to take documents to prove you are your child’s parent if you have different surnames.

  1. Encourage and facilitate contact between your child and their other parent while you are away

Unless there is a court order, you are not legally obliged to facilitate contact but it is a good thing to do. It will send a positive message to your child and will be appreciated by your ex. You are also likely to want your ex to do the same if and when they take your child on holiday.

The contents of this article are intended for general information purposes only and shall not be deemed to be, or constitute legal advice. We cannot accept responsibility for any loss as a result of acts or omissions taken in respect of this article.