Advice For Separated Parents Planning To Go Away This Summer


Its that time of year again. The sun is creeping out, the temperatures are slowly (emphasis on slowly) rising. This can only mean that summer is fast approaching. Many parents will be busy trying to make plans about how to keep their children occupied during the summer holidays. For some, this means making plans to go abroad with their children.

For parents who have separated, there are some things you can do to ensure that you have a nice time with your children:

It is important to remember that you may need the other parent’s written permission to take your child outside of England and Wales. This will depend on whether or not you share ‘parental responsibility’ for your child. If you are married to the other parent, or if your child was born after December 2003 and you are named as the father on their birth certificate you normally will share parental responsibility with the mother. If you don’t have responsibility, you can obtain it by obtaining the mother’s consent and obtaining a parental responsibility agreement or applying to court for a parental responsibility order.

If you share parental responsibility, and unless you have a residence order (now known as a child arrangements order), you will need the other parents written consent before your go abroad.

Therefore it is important that you make your plans early. Ensuring that you can tell the other parent where you will be and giving them advance notice helps in securing their written consent. By booking early, you may even be able to be to take advantage of even better deals on your holiday. There is still time to consult the other parent, most school terms do not end until late July.

If the other parent does not agree, then ultimately you may have to apply to court for permission. If you leave your holiday to last minute, you are unlikely to get a decision from the Court in time, hence why it is so important to try and make your plans early. Before you get to Court, you may need to go through mediation. Mediation does not involve court proceedings but does involve you and the other parent, with the help of an independent and trained specialist, trying to come up with an agreement about your holiday plans. For many families, particularly for parents who are nervous about letting their child go abroad without them for the first time, just talking through some of their concerns with someone neutral during the mediation process really helps.

If you require further information or advice in respect of this or any other family matter, please contact Imran Khodabocus 01392 284 851.

Remember, your first appointment is always free and even if you end up needing further advice, we offer a 10% discount to members of the Fire Service.


Who is Imran?

Imran is an Associate Solicitor having joined The Family Law Company in 2016. Imran has been qualified as a Solicitor since 2008 and previously worked at a regional practice in Somerset where he spent nearly 10 years there dealing with a wide range of cases from high value financial cases to complicated and sensitive cases involving children. Imran speaks French, German and Spanish and has previously lived and studied in Lyon, Barcelona and Brussels, where he worked with the European Commission.

Imran undertakes both private client and legal aid work. He represents clients in divorce and financial matters, civil partnership dissolutions and cohabitation. Imran also represents parents and grandparents as well as children themselves in all matters involving children. Imran also works in the field of domestic violence by assisting people in connection with injunctions and occupation orders.