Traveling outside the country with minor children can become complicated after divorce. If you frequently leave the United States on vacation and plan to bring your children while sharing custody, you must be on the same page with your coparent.
Review the common considerations you should think about before international travel with kids after divorce.
Refer to the custody agreement
Consider placing provisions about international travel in your custody agreement. For example, your parenting plan could indicate the number of days each parent can take the kids out of the country each year and establish a required written notice period during which you must let the other parent know about your plans. If you do not have these details, consider revising your parenting plan accordingly.
Prepare to compromise
Respect the other parent’s time when you plan a long trip out of the U.S. If he or she will lose overnight visits while you are away, for example, make sure that your kids get that extra time back when you return. Discuss the planned schedule for travel as early as possible with your coparent and always before booking nonrefundable flights and hotel rooms.
Have documents in order
To get a passport, your child must appear with both parents and you must present his or her birth certificate. If your child does not already have a passport and your coparent cannot go with you to get the necessary documentation, he or she can sign a consent form.
Communicating with your child’s other parent can help you avoid conflict around international travel and enjoy future vacations with your loved ones.