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Am I entitled to know where the DC are on holiday?

(225 Posts)
ilovemilton Mon 25-Jul-16 10:20:01

Shared care order. Two weeks court ordered holiday in August and one in October.

He is taking the children, 10 and 7, away on holiday during these weeks. He says the details of such are non of my business and he refuses to tell me any dates or locations. This is making the already hostile 10yo refuse to go to contact even more. DC have never been away from home this long without me and this is just adding to their distress.

Am I meant to know where they are? If so, how is this enforceable?

Fourormore Mon 25-Jul-16 14:29:54

Unless he has a residence order in his favour or a court order that says foreign travel is permitted, he needs your permission to take the children away.
It's perfectly reasonable to ask for travel details such as dates, methods of travel and where the children will be staying. If this were my ex I would be refusing consent until details were provided.

I'm not sure why the 10yo is aware of this sort of detail though. This is the sort of thing they should be protected from.

Fairuza Mon 25-Jul-16 14:33:29

Presumably he won't tell the 10yo where they are going, which is what is causing the distress.

PigletWasPoohsFriend Mon 25-Jul-16 14:40:23

Presumably he won't tell the 10yo where they are going, which is what is causing the distress

Or the OP has said to them ex won't say.

TimeforaNNChange Mon 25-Jul-16 14:51:16

Unless he has a residence order in his favour or a court order that says foreign travel is permitted, he needs your permission to take the children away.

No, he needs permission to take them abroad. He can take therm anywhere he likes within the uk unless the Court Order specifically states otherwise.

What concerns me is how the 10 year old has become so involved. At that age, all they need to know is that contact is scheduled. The whys, wherefalls and refusals are adult issues from which DCs should be protected.

Fairuza Mon 25-Jul-16 14:54:22

If a 10yo knows they are going on holiday, of course they are going to want to know where. If the dad won't say, what is the mum supposed to tell the kids when they ask?

TimeforaNNChange Mon 25-Jul-16 15:03:00

Ive been split from my DDs dad since she was 8, shared care, and I never know where they are going on holiday. It's never been a problem.

"Mum, dad says we're going on holiday, where are we going?"
"I don't know DD, you'll have to ask him"
"He won't tell me"
"Well, it'll be a nice surprise then. Now go and brush your teeth before bed".

ilovemilton Mon 25-Jul-16 15:03:08

He's told them they are going on holiday. He's taken them shopping for new clothes etc. He won't tell them where they are going as he has told them mummy isn't to know. Hence the distress. Of course I would like to shelter them from such agreements but this has all come back from contact.

He has told them they are going on a plane. While I don't think this is the case as I have their passports, when they ask me where they are going, what else can I say than I don't know?

So it's only abroad that he has to share? He hasn't asked for permission as he is going during his two weeks. The exact days / dates aren't specified in the order, hence why he is refusing to clarify departure and return dates.

ilovemilton Mon 25-Jul-16 15:05:27

I'm glad it's this easy for you timefora...
But my DC are particularly anxious and resistive to contact as it is. That kind of answer wouldn't wash. I've already had to detail what we are doing every day this week! They just like to know what's happening.

TheDailyMailareabunchofcunts Mon 25-Jul-16 15:08:54

Is there any way he could have got new passports for them? By saying the old ones are lost?
Not sure how these things work but I thought you needed a passport to get on a plane anywhere now. Not just 'abroad'
Is there a way of checking with the passport office?

TimeforaNNChange Mon 25-Jul-16 15:12:57

But my DC are particularly anxious and resistive to contact as it is. That kind of answer wouldn't wash. I've already had to detail what we are doing every day this week! They just like to know what's happening.

As you and your ex parent differently, you can help your DCs with the differences and transition by increasing their resilience. Instead of reassuring them by giving them a specific itinerary for the week, try to teach them that things are ok even when they don't always know what is happening in advance.

Your ex is wrong to tell the DCs that he doesn't want you to know where they are going, but he's not wrong not to tell them or you.

And he may well be taking them on a plane - I often fly within the uk. As he doesn't have their passports, you have no need to worry - they are with their dad, who has been awarded contact by the court. He may well do things differently to you, but unless you believe they are at risk, there is nothing you can do to prevent him having a role in their life.

TimeforaNNChange Mon 25-Jul-16 15:14:33

Not sure how these things work but I thought you needed a passport to get on a plane anywhere now.

No, my DH has often taken his NR DS on internal flights using a copy birth certificate.

FreedomIsInPeril Mon 25-Jul-16 15:15:46

but he's not wrong not to tell them or you.

Of course he is. Even if it wasn't upsetting them, which it is.

DailyMailEthicalFail Mon 25-Jul-16 15:16:45

He IS certainly wrong not to tell the children if it is causing them anxiety.

TimeforaNNChange Mon 25-Jul-16 15:18:00

Why, freedom.? Everyone parents differently, and it's certainly not a legal requirement for either parent to tell the other where they are spending time with the DCs.

TimeforaNNChange Mon 25-Jul-16 15:19:27

The O0 says it is her ex saying "mummy mustn't know" that is causing the distress - and if proven, that could be addressed by a court as it is emotionally damaging.

FreedomIsInPeril Mon 25-Jul-16 15:23:26

Why? Basic courtesy. Deliberately upsetting your children, ordering them to keep things from their mother etc is not "parenting differently". It's just being a dickhead.

Schwabischeweihnachtskanne Mon 25-Jul-16 15:28:06

Oh come on Timefor - even without separated/ divorced parents I'd hazard a guess most 10 year olds would be disquieted by being told they are being taken on holiday but are not going to be told where because the joint most trusted adult in their life mustn't know - in many circumstances this is quite a healthy thing to be freaked out by (no secrets, if people ask you not to tell trusted adults then it isn't a good secret etc).

A large number of adults would be unhappy about being out of control to the degree that you are not allowed to know what is going to happen/ where you are going to be taken, and unlike babies and toddlers 10 year olds are mature enough to have their wish to know the knowable respected. Lots of people like surprises but just as many truly hate them...

bloodyteenagers Mon 25-Jul-16 15:31:29

Personally I would be talking to my solicitor.
He's taking them on a plane and doesn't want you knowing.
Yes ok. He could just be an arse, and still staying in the UK.
However. He might not. To take them out of the U.K. he needs a letter. If he's applied for passports then the op will be fucked if she books a holiday and uses the ones she has. As they will come up as lost/stolen.

LordRothermereBlackshirtCunt Mon 25-Jul-16 15:32:44

If he won't clarify departure dare, how on earth are you supposed to ensure that your children are available? Or will they all simply disappear during his contact time without any forewarning?

FreedomIsInPeril Mon 25-Jul-16 15:34:47

No, my DH has often taken his NR DS on internal flights using a copy birth certificate

DEpends on the airline. More and more need photo id or strictly passport.

Schwabischeweihnachtskanne Mon 25-Jul-16 15:35:46

I don't think needing a letter is much protection - he can probably write one himself...

I travel by plane between the UK and Germany with my kids without my DH sometimes and have never been asked for a letter - not even when I still had my maiden name on my British passports and they had DH's name on their German passports, so there wasn't a surname or a nationality to link us on the documentation at all...

Will their be a flag that comes up on the computer at immigration if the OP's kids are subject to a court order? If he has re-applied for passports for them and has the "new" ones then that would be the only thing stopping him leaving the country with them.

JacketPoTayTo Mon 25-Jul-16 15:35:49

I can totally understand your concern. This is a exactly the kind of shit that my dad would have done and all I can say to try and make you feel better is that he probably isn't up to anything at all. It's just unnecessary cloak and dagger crap designed to make you anxious because really what mother is happy for somebody they have deep issues with taking their children away to an undisclosed location which could be literally anywhere on the planet? He is either trying to just exert every scrap of control that he has, trying to make you question his motives (is he trying to kidnap them? Are they going to a safe part of the world?) or possibly a combination of the two.

I can't help with the legal side but I'd look very, very carefully into it.

TimeforaNNChange Mon 25-Jul-16 15:37:18

Or will they all simply disappear during his contact time without any forewarning?

They won't "disappear" - how dramatic! The DCs are in the care of their dad for 2 weeks by order of the court. If he chooses to take them away during that time, that's entirely up to him - just as its up to the OP to decide where she takes the DCs when they are in her care.

Yes, the ex is being an arse by putting his DCs in the middle and telling them that their mum is not to know where they are going - if the OP wants to address that she can do so in court.
But demanding to know where they are going and what they are doing will get her nowhere.

Unless the OPs ex is a flight risk, the court will consider him as trustworthy and competent as she is.

FreedomIsInPeril Mon 25-Jul-16 15:39:13

I wouldn't let anyone take my children off in those circumstances, court order or not. They could hold me in contempt but they wouldn't be going unless I knew where, when, with who and that they were happy about it.

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