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Taking kids abroad on holiday laws when no contact? Anyone know the law?

(118 Posts)
Purplerainbow2 Tue 05-Apr-16 09:13:22

Hi, I have dc and they do not see their dad. I found out he was a have toward them so I do not allow contact. Was avusive toward me when married. I know you have to have the other parents permission to take dc Abroad, but what happens if you do not have contact, if the other parent does not see them? Do you still need permission? I'm loathe to make any contact for the sake of a possible holiday....... It will drag up a whole heap of trouble to the point of not bothering to take them abroad on a holiday. Does anyone know the law if there is no contact with the other parent if you need permission? I can't afford to contact my solicitor over this.

Tia

megletthesecond Tue 05-Apr-16 09:21:40

Still need permission apparently. I've looked into it because we're in a similar situation, abusive XP and zero contact. We just won't go aboard because I can't take the risk of setting him off again. There is some way around it when you apply to the courts but it costs and I heard they may still try and find your ex. It sucks.

I'm sure an expert will clarify shortly.

AnotherEmma Tue 05-Apr-16 09:22:37

Info here:
rightsofwomen.org.uk/get-information/family-law/children-law-relocation-holidays-abduction/
(See "what if I go on holiday with my child?")

Purplerainbow2 Tue 05-Apr-16 09:30:38

The section that says : 'if you have a child's arrangements order which states that the children live with you then you can go abroad with the children....' I have a child arrangement order from when we got our divorce quite a few years ago....... It states the children live with me and alternate weekends they go to their dads. When ex was kicking off a year ago and I said they didn't want to see him (which they don't, it's not just me) I had to see a solicitor who said the child arrangement is so old that it doesn't stand in court as the children's needs are different now to back then. So what does that mean???

AnotherEmma Tue 05-Apr-16 09:40:04

I think your best bet is to call the free RoW family law helpline:
rightsofwomen.org.uk/get-advice/family-law/

Unless there is a solicitor here who can advise (I'm not and don't want to give the wrong advice!)

Purplerainbow2 Tue 05-Apr-16 09:46:28

Thank you!

Fourormore Tue 05-Apr-16 15:37:13

If you have a child arrangements order where the court has ordered that the children live with you then you can take the children abroad for up to 28 days without the other parent's permission.

AnotherEmma Tue 05-Apr-16 16:18:35

Fourormore
Yes but the holiday shouldn't prevent the children from having contact with the NRP that is specified in the child arrangement order. This might be an issue for the OP even though the contact has stopped - but I'm not sure. Which is why I think she would need to call the helpline or ask a solicitor.

Fourormore Tue 05-Apr-16 17:17:27

Ah I didn't think that was the case, AnotherEmma. CAOs don't have a time limit as such so it would still " stand" - odd advice from the OPs solicitor there.

Child arrangements orders have only been called that since 2014 -- are you sure that's what you've got, OP? Before that they were residence orders and contact orders.

AnotherEmma Tue 05-Apr-16 17:30:39

Yes I thought the advice was odd as well. I'd be interested to know what a helpline solicitor would say about it.

Purplerainbow2 Tue 05-Apr-16 18:34:36

It's older than 2014 so I must have it wrong, statement of children? Does that sound right? Yesterday questioned the solicitor last year about that as ex brought it up. Solicitor said it wouldn't stand in court as it was so old and the needs of the children have changed since (they were a baby and a toddler when it was drawn up)

Purplerainbow2 Tue 05-Apr-16 18:35:42

So if I don't have this child arrangement surely I can still take them abroad if less than 28 days? I don't understand why that would make a difference especially as there is no contact?

HairySubject Tue 05-Apr-16 18:51:30

I have no idea of the legality but I have taken my children abroad without their father several times and it has never been an issue in any way.

AnotherEmma Tue 05-Apr-16 19:06:50

Just call the helpline - it's open now (7-9pm). It's run by solicitors.

Purplerainbow2 Tue 05-Apr-16 19:09:56

Thank you, I shall call once I get dc in bed!

prh47bridge Tue 05-Apr-16 20:14:31

I don't understand why that would make a difference especially as there is no contact

Because that is the law.

If you have a residence order in your favour or a child arrangement order giving you residence you can take your children out of the country for up to one month without needing anyone's consent.

If you do not have an order (and it sounds like you don't - I think you simply agreed the arrangements with your ex when you divorced) you must have the consent of everyone with PR to take your children out of the country. If you do not have that consent you are committing the criminal offence of child abduction.

As you were married your ex has PR so you need his consent. The fact he has no contact is irrelevant.

Many single parents will tell you they have taken their children out of the country without the appropriate consent and not had any problems. You may get away with it if you simply go. However, you may find that you are refused entry to the country you want to visit if you don't have the correct consent or court order.

If he refuses to consent you can go to court and get a Specific Issue Order to allow you to take your children out of the country. There should be no problem getting an order for a genuine holiday.

Purplerainbow2 Tue 05-Apr-16 20:20:09

I drove abroad in the past and he knew about it but there was no paperwork to confirm that. So are you saying every parent in this situation has to go to court to prove they have the other parents consent?!

NeedSomePeaceAndQuite Tue 05-Apr-16 20:20:09

I took my DD away abroad before she was 2, I applied for her passport and booked and took her away all without her father knowing and never had any problems. He still doesn't see her but I now have full residency and a prohibited steps order against him and was advised by my barrister that as she lives with me I can take her abroad for up to 28 days each time but any longer then that then I would need permission

Purplerainbow2 Tue 05-Apr-16 20:50:26

I have spent the last 1.5 hours on redial as th number is engaged, then it was ringing, get cut off, tried again and just goes to a recorded message!

Need does your daughter have the same surname as you? I know that is a big issue when children have different surname to mother. My passport is still in my old married name as I couldn't afford a new one with change of surname. The solicitor said legally I can travel with it but won't be able to renew it in that name, will have to change it. So I have I think 2 years left sad

prh47bridge Tue 05-Apr-16 20:53:15

So are you saying every parent in this situation has to go to court to prove they have the other parents consent

If you have the other parent's consent you don't need to go to court. If you have a relevant court order you don't need to go to court. If the other parent refuses to consent and there is no existing court order you have to go to court. But you must attempt to get the other parent's permission before going to court.

NeedSomePeaceAndQuite Tue 05-Apr-16 21:00:43

Purple no my daughter has a different surname, I drove down to the passport office to hand her paperwork in and make sure there weren't any problems and explained that she's NC with her father but he is on the birth certificate and they said they didn't need him to sign it or to contact him about it and when I booked my holiday I explained the travel agents and they never warned me of any problems so I just went away and never had any problems or questions from either side

littleblackno Tue 05-Apr-16 21:08:51

I've been away with my kids (who have a different surname to me) several times. No-one has batted an eyelid. I do have their dad's conset but no-one would have known this.

Purplerainbow2 Tue 05-Apr-16 21:17:10

There is no court order. We divorced and in that divorce was a statement of children I think it was called, stating dc live with me and ex had then every other weekend. This was 5+ years ago. There is no contact and hasn't been for some time. Due to the abuse, I don't want to have to contact him to ask his 'permission' to take dc on holiday. It just doesn't seem fair. If I managed to make contact he would prob say no just to be an arse and make me go to court spending money I don't have

Shutthatdoor Tue 05-Apr-16 21:19:27

I've been away with my kids (who have a different surname to me) several times. No-one has batted an eyelid. I do have their dad's conset but no-one would have known this.

I have been stopped. My DH and I are married but different surnames. DC have his name.

Fourormore Tue 05-Apr-16 21:23:26

Then you can't go. Or you can but would be committing a criminal offence.

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