Can I take my child overseas?

If your child is part of family law proceedings, then no, you can not take your child overseas without the other parent’s consent. Following the Family Law Act, it is a Commonwealth offence for a person to take or send a child from Australia in the following circumstances:

  • There are Court proceedings for parenting Orders;
  • There is an appeal in the Court in relation to parenting Orders; or
  • It is contrary to Court Orders whereby a child has been limited or prevented from travelling overseas.
taking a child overseas (1)

What if I disregard court orders and take my child overseas?

Should a parent disregard Court Orders which limit or prevent a child from travelling overseas and take a child or send a child out of Australia, then their conduct may result in contempt of Court.

Should you be considering overseas travel with your child, it is strongly recommended that you obtain legal advice well before the intended travel period.

Do I have to notify anyone if I wish to take my child overseas?

It is also important that you are aware of your obligations if your child is on the airport watchlist. For instance:

  • Providing the Australian Federal Police with the child’s passport details, any aliases and your 24 hour contact number and details;
  • Notifying the Australian Federal Police of any changes to your personal details;
  • Notifying the Australian Federal Police of any new Orders that may affect your child’s status in the Family Law Watchlist; and
  • Informing the Australian Federal Police of your intention to travel (where travel is permitted by a Court or Consent) no less than 10 working days before your departure.

What should I do if the other parent is taking the child overseas?

If you are concerned that your child is about to be taken overseas without your permission and in contravention of a Court Order and the Courts are closed, you should immediately seek legal advice. If you have an urgent Family Law matter after hours, you can contact the Family Law Courts’ after hour’s service or your local Police.

Luke Cudmore

Principal Family Lawyer at Cudmore Legal Family Lawyers Brisbane Co. Luke is experienced in family law matters ranging from divorce to child custody. He is a skilled negotiator and strategist and fights zealously for his clients family law rights.