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The father or in the case of same sex couples the non-birthing mother will have responsibility if he/she is named on the birth certificate and the child is born after December 2003. They will also have Parental Responsibility if the parents marry.

If the other parent does not have Parental Responsibility, you are free to remove the child from jurisdiction as you wish.

If parents separate and a parent wishes to remove the child from the jurisdiction for the purposes of a holiday and the other parent agrees then, it would be best to take a confirmation letter from the parent not attending the holiday with all their details, including name, address, date of birth, telephone number and their passport number.

If the non-holidaying parent refuses then you would need to apply to the court for a Specific Issue Order, asking the court to make an order that you should be able to go. A word of warning these applications are not quick and therefore its best to deal with these issues well in advance of any holiday.

If a parent has a Family Arrangements Order from the court confirming that the child lives with them (formerly a Residence Order). Then the child(ren) named on that order maybe removed from the jurisdiction for the purpose of a holiday for up to 4 weeks in any one time without the consent of the other parent.

If a child is removed from the jurisdiction without your consent and you have concerns that the child may not be returned to the Jurisdiction, you should obtain Legal Advice immediately as this can be a serious situation which requires immediate action.

With the school holidays soon being upon us, we thought that this might be quite a relevant topic and a question we are often asked. The Jurisdiction means England and Wales.

The first place to start is that all parents with Parental Responsibility must consent to a child being removed from the jurisdiction, unless there is Child Arrangements Order stating where the child lives (formally called a Residence Order) but I will talk about this later.

The birth mother normally will automatically have Parental Responsibility for a child as soon as it’s born, unless Social Services are involved.

If you would like to speak to us about removing children from the jurisdiction, please contact us here

This article was written by Samantha Jeanes who is a Partner at Abels Solicitors & Commissioners. Samantha is a Member of The Law Society Family Law Advanced Accreditation Scheme and can be contacted at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.