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Get permission before you travel overseas with children

| May 8, 2020 | Child Custody |

When Ohio parents are divorced and wish to travel overseas with their children, they do not necessarily have unlimited rights in this area. Oftentimes, the court needs to be involved when they wish to leave the country and are having difficulty with the other parent. In order to avoid this, they should first address this in the divorce agreement.

Matters of travel can be governed by the terms of the custody agreement. Parents can insert clauses that give them the right to travel internationally with the children subject to certain conditions. The other parent would then need to consent to this type of travel. It is not always an easy issue to deal with because some parents may have their reasons for trying to block this travel. The hope is that the parties can come to an agreement.

Even if this is covered by the divorce agreement, the State Department has its own rules about international travel. Specifically, the State Department will not issue a passport to a child unless both parents have consented to it. If one parent applies for a passport for their child, they will need to provide a signed and notarized form from the other parent that gives their informed consent. Without the passport, the parent cannot travel. The gray area is when international travel is not covered by the divorce agreement.

This area may require the assistance of a child custody lawyer given the sensitivity. There may need to be a hearing in front of a judge if one parent wants to travel with the children outside of the country and the other parent is blocking the trip. Those who know that they may need to travel overseas should be proactive and address the issue during the divorce process with permission granted by the custody agreement.