Schools are getting ready to close for the summer break. Travelling with children can be tricky at the best of times but for those parents who are travelling with a child with a different surname, it can be even more complicated.
It is becoming more common for people have a different surname to their child. This could be as a result of a divorce and remarriage and of course there are increasing numbers of unmarried couples who have children.
If you are going to be travelling with a child with a different surname you should make sure that before you travel abroad you have the right documents to avoid stress, upset and even missed flights.
To ensure that your holiday goes smoothly, the airport officials need to be satisfied with your relationship with your child so the documents you may need are:
- Your child’s birth certificate. This will match with the details on their passport and will also give the full names of both parents. If your name has changed since your child was born you will need to take proof of your change of name. This could mean travelling with your marriage certificate or a change of name deed.
- You may also want to warn your children that they may be asked questions directly by the immigration officials and they should not be worried and answer clearly and honestly.
- If you are not travelling with your child’s father, you should also ensure that you can show that you have his consent to you taking the child abroad.
- If there is a Child Arrangements Order in place which states your child lives with you, you can take your child abroad for up to 28 days without the other parent’s consent. In this situation you should take a copy of the Child Arrangement Order with you.
- To completely cover yourself I would always recommend asking the other parent to sign a consent form before travel or write out a letter setting out their consent. This should provide their full contact details and specific details of the trip including the dates, destination and address. This should be signed by the other parent. It would also be helpful to attach a copy of their passport to this consent document.
This extra effort in preparing the paperwork before travelling abroad with a child with a different surname will hopefully minimise any stress and ensure that you all enjoy your holiday.
If you have any questions about this blog, please contact the Family Team for more information.
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