Passengers travelling abroad with offspring with different surnames on their passports have been issued a stark warning about their ability to head overseas. In the most extreme circumstances, the adults leading the blended family could see themselves embroiled in a “child abduction case” according to a family lawyer. The shock potential scenario comes amid overall travel concerns in the run up to Brexit, where the UK will leave the EU on March 29, and the changing passport regulations and validity. Lawyer David Connor has told the Chronicle correct documentation – including those from the child’s other parent – will be needed.
He warned it was unmarried parents, and those who were divorced, who were at most risk of falling foul of the regulations.
They might come as a shock to some, who perhaps understandably would have thought a passport for the youngster in question would be sufficient.
As well as refusing permission to fly, David suggested airport staff could notch action one step higher and even call in police if they suspect the possibility of kidnap.
He said: “People need to take extra caution when holidaying with children who don’t share their surname as they could unknowingly end up embroiled in a child abduction case, be refused past check-in, or turned away at border control.
“It’s vital you have the correct documentation to hand or it could derail your trip.
“For separated families, you’ll need evidence of approval from your child’s other parent, but remember to seek approval from everyone with parental responsibility – this may include grandparents too.
“You’ll also need a copy of any Child Arrangement Order which proves you have court approval to take the child abroad.
“It’s vital that all evidence marries up and this is where divorced parents are often caught out, particularly women who revert back to their maiden name. A change of name deed will help here, which can be supplied by a solicitor.
“Take a copy of your child’s birth certificate with you too to prove who you are.”
Statistics show around 600,000 parents have been turned away at border control.
Travellers are advised to check the gov.uk website before making their trip.
It stated the regulations even apply to children whose parent has passed away.
The website stated: “You must get the permission of everyone with parental responsibility for a child or from a court before taking the child abroad.
“You won’t need permission from an absent parent if they’re not on the child’s birth certificate
if an absent parent has passed away you may be required to take the death certificate with you.”
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