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Taking a Child to Another Country

As international travel is now commonplace for most people, so are marriages from different countries.

Unfortunately, when such a marriage breaks down it is not uncommon for one or both parties to want to return to their country of origin often with the child(ren) of the marriage. To be able to successfully relocate to a country outside England and Wales it is necessary to obtain the consent of the other party; and in the absence of such consent, the permission of the Court.

Before making such an important decision it is very important to get all your “ducks in a row”. This article looks at all the factors that must be considered when making the move from England and Wales to another country.

The factors are as follows:

  • The reasons for wanting to relocate;
  • Specific details of where you intend to live;
  • Practical and realistic details of how you will fund the move;
  • Information about the locality of where you intend to move to and what the area has to offer children e.g. medical centres, dentists and schools;
  • What will be the impact on education including any disruptions at key stages of education. You should compare the education systems and the recognition of the foreign exams in England if the child later wants to return;
  • Include a map of the area;
  • How far away will you be from a support network of family, friends and childcare;
  • Does the proposed area have any social or crime issues;
  • Are there any immigration issues that could affect either parent to travel freely to see the child;
  • You should provide full details of proposed employment and your expected income;
  • You should provide full information on the school the child will attend;
  • You should set out full and detailed contact proposals and how contact will be funded;
  • You should consider the wishes of the child(ren);
  • Will there be a language barrier for the parent or child, and if applicable, how will this be overcome.

From our experience, dealing with these issues early on can avoid expensive Court proceedings which is not beneficial for either party or the child(ren). We of course can assist you in dealing with this matter by providing specialist legal advice on the best way forward.


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