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Can I take my child on holiday abroad without the Father’s consent?

June 11, 2020, By Slater Heelis

If you take your child (under 16) out of the country without the permission of the other parent (father or mother), then you will be at risk of committing an offence under the Child Abduction Act 1984. This also includes taking your child on a holiday abroad. Where your child is going on a school trip abroad then it will also be necessary for both you and the other parent to provide consent.

If you are named as the parent that your child lives with in a child arrangements order made by the Family Court, then you are permitted to take your child out of the country for a period of less than one month. However, in any other circumstances, it is absolutely vital to obtain the written consent of the other parent.

What if the Other Parent won’t Consent?

The other parent should not unreasonably refuse consent, however in the event that the other parent won’t consent to you taking your child on a holiday abroad, the most appropriate course of action will usually be an application to the Family Court. This is because of the seriousness in law of taking children out of the country without the appropriate consent.

Applications to the Family Court in these situations should be made for a specific issue order, and the key factor will be what is in your child’s best interests.

Child Abduction Act

Child abduction is a serious offence, and to ensure that the peace is kept amongst parents, it is wise to make agreements before any bookings are made.

If you are concerned about international child abduction, we have a specialist within our family law team who will be happy to help.

Contact us on 0161 969 3131 or fill in our contact form and the team will be in touch.