Be aware that if your children are the subject of Family Court proceedings or parenting orders made under the Family Law Act, there are very important things you must consider before travelling overseas with your kids. Pursuant to section 65Y of the Act, a person must not take or send a child, being the subject of a parenting order, from Australia to a place outside Australia, unless by consent of all parties to the parenting order, or where consent cannot be reached, unless by further order of the Court. To do so risks imprisonment. (If you have concerns that about your child being taken overseas without your consent, call us to discuss applications that may be made to the Court to prevent a child from leaving the country at any international air or sea port and/or an application to prevent a passport from issuing in a child’s name.)
When preparing to go overseas with children who are the subject of a parenting order, you’ll need to negotiate the travel with the other parent and prepare necessary consent documents to reflect an agreement regarding overseas travel, or prepare a court application seeking the permission of the court for the travel. We suggest you:
1. Plan well and early.
Leave yourself enough time (ideally three months or more) to negotiate, including any potential application to the Court.
2. Plan to be safe.
Take out travel insurance for the travelling parent and children and provide a copy of the certificate of insurance to the non-travelling parent.
3. Be fair and reasonable.
Plan overseas travel during your scheduled periods of time with the child as prescribed by the order, or if genuinely not possible, offer make-up time for the non-travelling parent.
4. Provide details.
Advise the other parent of the proposed itinerary, provide contact details while overseas and proposals for communication between the child and the non-travelling parent during the time away – phone and/or Skype or Facetime communication twice per week is a good idea.