My husband has received a letter from his ex wife’s solicitor asking him to sign a form giving consent for her to take one or both of the children abroad on holiday at any time.
Its not asking for a specific holiday with dates, where to etc but for ongoing and open consent to go anywhere in the world at any time. It also states that she can take both children or just one which is rather puzzling as if she takes just one, where and who with would the remaining child be ?
it would be quite concerning for us not knowing whether the children are out of the county or not. Given the current situation with coronavirus and the fact that one of the children has an allergy and was administered an epipen and blue lighted to hospital recently it is a worry.
Surely the date of holidays, destination and duration should be in the consent letter as a bare minimum ? Would he be unreasonable to ask for specifics rather than sign an ongoing and open consent form ?
Where there is no Child Arrangements Order in place, a parent wishing to take children abroad (out of the jurisdiction of the UK) for any length of time (even one night) must have the consent of all those with parental responsibility.
It isn't unreasonable to request details of each holiday such as dates and location.
This sounds like a \"blanket\" request, to remove the need to request consent for each holiday. Your husband doesn't have to agree to this, and could request instead that the ex notifies him for each holiday, furnishing him with the dates and location. If he refuses entirely, then his ex may well seek a Specific Issue Order through the court to gain leave from the court to take the children on holidays abroad.
The holiday dates shouldn't encroach on his time with the children which is why he should make sure that she provides him with that detail.
Thank you for your reply.
If she submits an application to court to try and get the blanket consent I’m assuming it would be a specific steps order. Would my husband then be able to raise contact issues at the hearing and get a contact order drawn up or would he have to make a separate application for that ? There are no court orders in place currently and contact is minimal due to her behaviour in disrupting and blocking contact. So if she applies to the court could this be an opportunity for my husband to get a proper contact order in place ?
The children are 6 and 12.
There's no such order as a \"specific steps\" order. The appropriate application for Mum would be a Specific Issue Order.
As the application would be to address the issue of holidays abroad only, your husband wouldnt be able to hijack the application in order to deal with general child arrangements - he would to make his own application for a Child Arrangements Order, which could also deal with the issue of holidays abroad.
Generally speaking, holidays abroad are considered to be beneficial to children - providing the location isn't unsuitable (ie a war zone, or the host country being in conflict with the UK); and that mum isn't a flight risk.
Perhaps mediation would be a good starting point for the parents to look at resolving the issues and setting out clear, agreed arrangements for the children.
Thank you for the advice. Mediation is worth looking at but has never worked before as it’s been classed unsuitable but they could try reapplying I suppose
Another letter has come from her solicitor asking for written consent for a school trip abroad in the summer. My husband rang the school to see why they hadn’t sent him a consent form directly and they said there is no need for his consent in the circumstances, the mothers consent is enough. They seemed a little confused as to why a solicitor would be involved and so are we. Are we missing something here ? Seems strange asking for consent that the school doesn’t require.