Can I take my child abroad without the other parent’s consent?
We are often asked who can take a child out of the UK on holiday and whether the consent of both parents is required.
When a child arrangements order is in force, the person with whom the child lives can take the child out of the UK for up to 1 month. No other person can take the child out of the UK, for any length of time without:
- The consent of everyone with parental responsibility for the child; or
- Permission of the Court.
If a parent who has parental responsibility but is not named as the parent with whom the child lives in the Child Arrangements Order removes him/ her from the UK, this is classified as a wrongful removal.
When there is no Child Arrangements Order in place and either parent removes the child from the UK without the consent of everyone with parental responsibility or permission of the Court, this is again classified as a wrongful removal.
A person who wrongfully removes a child under 16 from the UK commits the offence of child abduction. The left-behind parent can make an urgent application to the Court for the immediate return of the child to their care.
When traveling abroad as a single parent or as a parent with a different surname to your child, difficulties can sometimes be encountered when asked for evidence by the travel company that you have consent of the child’s other parent to travel. We can assist you with the preparation of any necessary travel consent documentation to ensure that your travel arrangements are as easy and stress free as possible.
At Watson Thomas Solicitors we can assist you in making arrangements to remove your child from the UK for the purpose of a holiday or more permanently.
In most situations, especially with regard to a short-term removal for the purpose of a holiday, arrangements can be agreed without an application to the Court becoming necessary. We can assist you in reaching an amicable agreement or making an application to the Court if a voluntary agreement cannot be reached.