Divorce & Family

Taking Children Abroad

Where one parent wishes to take a child abroad for a short holiday the basic rule is that the parent must obtain the prior consent of the other parent or a Court Order (a Specific Issue Order). It is wise to get the consent in writing. Courts tend to think that foreign holidays are good for children, except where taken in school term time. A parent who has an order that their child shall live with them (or a residence order under the old rules) may take their child abroad for 1 month without the other parent's written consent.

Where one parent wishes to move abroad permanently from this country with their child, and the other parent objects, then that parent will have to make an application to the court for the court's permission to do so.

Such applications are complex and require a great deal of thought and preparation. We are very experienced in dealing with these matters and one of our cases was reported in the law reports, following our success in the Court of Appeal. We recommend that you take advice from us at an early stage; you will need guidance as to the issues to consider, together with the significant amount of information you will need to gather. You are likely also to have to make a number of visits to your chosen destination when preparing your case. We cannot advise strongly enough on the need for preparation, preparation, preparation before making such an application to the court.  

We do not act in Hague Convention proceedings; you should contact one of the limited number of specialist solicitors in this field.