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Separated parents warned over summer holiday plans

A solicitor is advising separated couples with children to inform their former partner before taking family holidays.

Helen Lucking, partner in the Family team at North West law firm Napthens, reports that her department has dealt with a number of cases in recent years which have seen one parent take children out of the country without informing the other, which can cause a number of legal issues.

She has cautioned that procedures at border control points in the UK, along with many other countries, are being tightened at the moment, and many people could face a random check.

She said: “We have found that the border control agencies are tightening up in a number of ways, including over parents taking children out of the country.

“For instance, we have seen a situation where the border agency has stopped a mother with a different surname to her children and quizzed her over whether their father is aware that the children are going abroad.

“Legally, someone must have parental responsibility for a child, and the consent of all other people with parental responsibility before they can take them out of the country.

“In addition to getting the simple verbal consent of a former partner, it is best to obtain a letter, email or even a text message to approve the plans and let them know when you will be back.

“With the summer holidays upon us it’s important to be aware of the rules and ensure that, by taking a few simple steps, any legal issues are prevented.”

Family and Divorce - Partner - Helen Lucking