With the school holidays in full swing it is important that as a separated parent you know your rights in relation to taking your children abroad for a holiday.

You must have permission from everybody with parental responsibility for the child, or a court order, to enable you to take the child abroad.

If you have a child arrangements order in place that confirms you have residence of the child, you are able to take the child abroad for up to 28 days without permission, providing there is no court order which says you are not able to.

It would be advised that you inform the other person with parental responsibility with full travel details, and provide addresses and contact details for you when you reach your accommodation.

In order to confirm that you have permission from everybody with parental responsibility, it is usually sufficient to have a letter signed by the other person with parental responsibility, setting out that they give their permission for the child to be taken abroad. It is also a good idea to have their contact details set out in this letter also as you may be asked to produce this letter at a UK or foreign border, and they may wish to check the validity of the letter.

If you take a child abroad without permission, or without a court order; it is child abduction.

If the other person with parental responsibility will not provide their permission, then you can obtain a court order by applying to the court for a specific issue order.  You will need to provide full details of the trip, including full travel details and provide contact information for everybody that has parental responsibility for the child.

If you are unsure if you need to obtain a court order to take your child abroad, please contact Nicola McCourt at our Boston office on 01205 311511 or speak to a member of the Children Department.

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