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Can I take my children out of the country?

If both you and the other parent of your children have parental responsibility, and there are no orders or any restrictions in place, then neither of you can take the children abroad without the written consent of the other.

If they refuse to give consent, you will have to apply to Court for permission to travel abroad with them. These applications can take time, so you should apply several months before the holiday.

The removal of a child from one part of the UK to another (for example from England to Scotland) is not a removal that requires prior written consent or the court's permission.

No one can remove a child who is subject to a child arrangements order which states whom the child lives with without the prior written consent of every other person with parental responsibility or with the permission of the court.

If you have a child arrangements order stating that the child lives with you then you can remove the child from the UK for less than a month without requiring any additional permission.

If you have parental responsibility and there is a child arrangements order but the child does not live with you and you take a child out of the country without the consent or permission of the individual with the Court Order in their favour then that would be a wrongful removal. The left-behind parent could bring an application for the summary return of the child under child abduction laws.

Watson Thomas Solicitors have offices in Fleet, Hampshire and Guildford, Surrey

For further information, please visit our website at www.watson-thomas.co.uk or call us at our Fleet Office on 01252 622422 or our Guildford Office on 01483 320114 to book a FREE Initial Consultation with one of our family law solicitors or email any enquiries to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..