Personal Law

New Year, New Start Abroad? – What About The Children?

December 19, 2018

Over the festive period you may have grown further apart from your partner, and possibly been offered the chance to start a new life for yourself abroad. If you have any children, this could be a very difficult situation, especially when Brexit is just around the corner! The consequences could be catastrophic for both yourself and your child(ren) should you not give it enough thought. The following need to be considered:-

Living arrangements:-

  • If you are moving abroad with your child, or moving abroad and leaving your child behind, especially in the EU, restrictions may soon be in place regarding residency and free movement;
  • For this precise reason, we would advise that you consult a solicitor regarding the implications of Brexit on your proposed move;

Parental Responsibility:-

  • Mothers automatically have parental responsibility but fathers only automatically have these rights if they are married to the mother when the child is born;
  • If the couple are unmarried but the father is named on the birth certificate, then the father also has parental responsibility;
  • However, this only applies to children born after 1 December 2003;
  • If the child is born before 1 December 2003 you either have to request parental responsibility be granted by the Court or enter into a formal agreement with the child’s mother.

If you have parental responsibility, your former partner cannot take your child out of the country without your express permission. This can be done by either consenting to a formal agreement or an application to the Court being made. This is complicated further if the country is outside of the EU.

At any stage, if you are unsure of what to do, you should contact a solicitor whether that be drafting a formal agreement or making an application to the Court. If you do need help, please call either Gordon Johnson or Steven Hayre of Jarmans Solicitors on 01795 472291.