5 things to check before travelling after a separation

1st June 2023·In The Media

With the summer holidays fast approaching, many are beginning to consider the best holiday destinations for every member of the family. When travelling after a separation and with children, there are many issues to consider, such as using the right documentation and ensuring that they are safe to travel to the chosen location.

With 2.5 million families falling under the separation category, travelling can become an even more difficult task if certain travel criteria are not met by those with parental responsibility for a child.

If you have been through a separation and are looking to travel this summer, we have provided this brief guide to answer the questions you must consider before travelling and how we can support you in all of your childcare arrangement needs.

Do I need my ex-partner’s permission to travel?

Yes. For anyone to take a child abroad, you must get permission from everyone with parental responsibility for said child. If you travel with a child and parental permission has not been received, you will be breaking the law and could be charged with child abduction.

To obtain permission, you can ask your ex-partner in a domestic setting and acquire written permission and signatures to ensure that you are safe to travel with the child. If this cannot be arranged, you will need to apply to a court for permission to take a child abroad. This is always the last resort, as the process is a lot longer and could interfere with travel plans.

Whether you use a solicitor or decide amongst yourselves, you must take this signed permission document to border crossings, especially when travelling beyond Europe. This letter just needs to include the contact details of the parent that has given the permission, a short statement saying they consent to the travel, and a signature.

Does my ex-partner need to know the details of my travel plans?

While your ex-partner may not need the complete itinerary of your trip, you must provide the date of departure, how you will be travelling, and the details on the whereabouts of the child while on holiday. As standard, sharing contact details and being consistent with this throughout the holiday should be a top priority, especially if it has been decided by the court.

Travel documents being discussed

Which travel documents will my child need?

Depending on their age, many children will only need their passports to travel. However, in instances where they are travelling with single parents or adults that do not have the same last name, then additional documents may be asked for at border crossings or travel providers, such as airports.

Along with passports, you may be asked to share the following documents:

  • Written consent forms from ex-partners and contact details
  • Full birth certificates for the child
  • Divorce/separation documents or marriage certificates if the child’s surname is not the same as your own

When it comes to travelling with children after a separation, it always pays to be prepared. While travelling with these documents may seem excessive, ensuring that your travel plans are not delayed or cancelled due to issues like permission are key to having a pleasant holiday for yourself and your child.

What if my ex-partner does not agree to my travel plans?

Families come in all shapes and sizes, and issues can be just as complex as the relationships within. If mutual agreements cannot be made when it comes to the care of your children, then you must consider taking issues such as travel arrangements to court and getting a solicitor so you will be able to sort through them in a harm-reductive way.

ICS Law is a modern, forward-thinking firm with a focus on family. We service parents and separated families across South Tyneside with a range of issues, such as social service disputes, family court representation, and child custody arrangement support.

Get in touch with us today and secure the solicitor support you need to secure the best outcome for your child’s arrangements and future plans.

5 things to check before travelling after a separation

Related articles...

What is Stamp Duty Land Tax?

Read more

Common Law marriage – separating facts and fiction

Read more

Love and legality: understanding Prenuptial Agreements

Read more