Travelling with children can present unique challenges for separated or divorced parents. We help families with all legal aspects of traveling with children.
Applying for a Passport
Passport Canada typically requires consent of both parents or guardians to allow a child’s travel outside the country, even if one parent has sole custody. However, it is possible to draft an agreement or court order that allows one parent to apply for and obtain a child’s passport without the signature of the other parent. If you anticipate this being an issue, consider addressing this in your separation agreement or child custody order to avoid future problems.
Parents traveling alone with children should always have a travel consent letter from the child’s other parent or guardian. This is the case whether the parents are separated or not. The letter of consent should be presented at the border as you leave Canada and as you re-enter the country. Airlines may also require a travel consent letter for domestic travel.
While it is possible to bypass another parent’s consent through an agreement or court order it may not be appropriate given the situation. Consult one of the experienced family law lawyers at MDW Law in Halifax to find the best approach if you anticipate problems with child-related travel.
Court Order for Travel
If parents cannot agree whether a child should travel, a parent or guardian can ask the court to resolve the issue. The court will consider the reasons for travel, details about the destination and the best interests of the children. Depending on the specific circumstances, the court may consider granting travel-related orders on a rush basis or under a simplified process. Please contact us at our Halifax or Bedford office to find out how we can help you.