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Custody and access family law

Custody and access

If one or more of your children is going to live abroad with the other parent you need to consider how contact will work before your child moves abroad as it might be a condition of your permission for the move to take place. A court order can be made to give force to your agreement and to ensure that contact does take place.

Our highly experienced team of lawyers can help, guide and support you with issues regarding access to your children if they permanently live abroad with your ex-partner.

What happens if my child moves abroad?

  • If your child is moving within the EU then child arrangements orders are automatically recognised and enforceable without further court orders. If you already have a child arrangements order it may require variation to reflect the move
  • If your child is moving to a non-EU country then you should take local advice in the country they are moving to and we can help you with this. It may be appropriate for you to obtain a “mirror order” from the court of the country that your child is moving to. This replicates the terms of your UK court order so that it is enforceable in the country to which your child is moving
  • Any cases with an international element need to be looked at carefully and you should ensure that the solicitor you instruct has the expertise and contacts to advise you effectively

How will contact work?

There are many ways you can maintain your relationship with your child:

  • Through the use of Skype, webcam, text and email
  • You could make enquiries with airlines about the age they allow children to travel without an adult if you consider your child is old enough to cope with this. Many airlines have arrangements for young children to be looked after by airline staff which may be effective. This will be suitable where there is no connecting flight and a responsible adult can see the child on to the plane and then meet him or her at the gate upon arrival. Planning trips well in advance will give your child something to look forward to and hopefully reduce the cost of airfares.

Which country would make decisions about my child?
Jurisdiction is generally based on where the child usually lives (habitual residence), but there are certain exceptions to the rule.

International Family Law specialists

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