With the summer holidays fast approaching, many parents have already booked or are looking to book family holidays. Often, the question of taking your child abroad and asking for the other parent for consent to do so is brushed over, later causing difficulty when flights and accommodation have been booked. In addition, if your child has a different surname to you, it can create a problem at the airport.
Travelling abroad with your child:
If you share parental responsibility, you must obtain permission from any other person with parental responsibility to take your child abroad. If you do not have this consent, you could be accused of abducting your child.
If there is a Child Arrangements Order in place which states that your child ‘lives with’ you, you only need to obtain the consent of anyone else with parental responsibility if you intend to leave the UK for a period longer than 28 days and also prevent the other parent’s Court ordered contact. This is also only if the Order in place is silent in relation to providing the other parent with consent to go abroad as often, Orders refer to one parent obtaining the permission of the other before travelling.
It is often the case that when a child is taken abroad, the parent taking the child on holiday will provide the other parent with flight details and details of where the child will be staying and with whom for the holiday period. It is always advisable to obtain the other parent’s consent to the holiday in writing so that there can be no denial that the other parent has consented to the holiday.
If permission is not granted by the other parent, the parent intending to take the child on holiday would have to apply to the Court for a Specific Issue Order, asking a Judge to Order that the child can go on holiday.
The child’s surname:
Quite often, a child will have a different surname to one of their parents which causes a problem when that parent is taking their child on holiday. Airports have tight checks in place and often, parents with different surnames to their children will get stopped at border control. It is advisable to carry your child’s birth certificate, proof of your change of name and a letter from the child’s other parent confirming his/her consent to the holiday so that if you are stopped at border control, you are able to explain your situation to the officials.
Should you have any queries in relation to taking your child abroad on holiday or how to deal with travelling with a child that has a different surname to you, please contact us and one of our specialist team will be able to assist.
T: 029 2034 2233
Author: Fay Jones