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Can My Ex Stop Me Taking My Son on Holiday?

By: Emma Jones - Updated: 17 Jul 2018 | comments*Discuss
 
Can My Ex Stop Me Taking My Son On Holiday?

Q.

I booked a holiday to Egypt when my partner and I were together. We have split up and now she is saying I can't take my son on this holiday. He was born after 2003 and I am on the birth certificate, he bears my name, and there are no residental orders or any other legal orders in place.

Where do I stand? I have only been gone two weeks and her boyfriend is already sleeping in my bed. Our son is only 4

(K.C, 15 May 2009)

A.

It sounds as though the split between you and your ex is still fairly recent so it must be very difficult trying to deal with this situation. Not only are you angry, upset and confused about the end of your relationship but are now being stopped from spending time with your son. When you are used to seeing him every day this is obviously going to feel very unfair.

As you are named on the birth certificate you automatically have Parental Responsibility which means you have the right to be involved in the upbringing of your son. You are entitled to a say in all major life decisions that affect him and his wellbeing. However, if he continues to live with your ex, then she have the right to make decisions about his everyday life. As you have split so recently and have no legal settlements in place there is nothing concrete to refer to about who has residence or custody of your son.

Technically, as long as your son has his own passport, you are able to take him out of the country without your ex’s consent. However, legally it is encouraged for you to seek her written consent. At this early stage of your split it would be inadvisable to take him out of the country without her consent as it could work against you in the courts. Your ex is being unreasonable about the situation, especially as you booked the holiday before you split, but if she wanted to cause a fuss then she could apply for a Specific Issue Order to stop you taking him away.

The most important issue here is that you two find a mature way to communicate and concentrate on what is best for your son. He is probably also confused about the split and it would be good for you to spend some time with him. Try to talk rationally and calmly to your ex about the situation. Don’t make accusations or bring her new boyfriend into the conversation, just stick to talking about your son. It would be a good idea to Consider Mediation so that you can find a way to work together amicably.

Check out the Separated Dads Forum... It's a great resource where you can ask for advice on topics including Child Access, Maintenance, CAFCASS, Fathers Rights, Court, Behaviour or simply to have a chat with other dads.

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T - Your Question:
HiIm looking at trying to talk my kids mum around to letting me take my children away for a week abroad. Now I've never had any issues with seeing my kids she is good in that way. But during our whole relationship we never went on holiday outside of the uk because she has mental health issues and with that a fear of most things flying being one of them. We had many an argument over her fear ruling what our kids do an don't do. I feel this is unfair because its blocking there chance to make memories. I am desperate to take them away for a week, where would I stand on this? Is there any legal way I can get to do it?

Our Response:
You would have to request permission from the other parent with parental responsibility, please see link here.
SeparatedDads - 17-Jul-18 @ 2:43 PM
Hi Im looking at trying to talk my kids mum around to letting me take my children away for a week abroad. Now I've never had any issues with seeing my kids she is good in that way. But during our whole relationship we never went on holiday outside of the uk because she has mental health issues and with that a fear of most things flying being one of them. We had many an argument over her fear ruling what our kids do an don't do. I feel this is unfair because its blocking there chance to make memories. I am desperate to take them away for a week, where would i stand on this? Is there any legal way i can get to do it?
T - 17-Jul-18 @ 12:06 AM
Fther- Your Question:
I have two kids with my , broke up two years ago. I have always have the older daughter every Saturday and Sunday, she however changed this to Sunday only which I am not happy about but I accepted regardless. I am planning to take my big daughter to Disney just for a weekend, she is refusing to let without no reason.Tried everything I could including talking to her parent she still saying no and threatening to reduce the hours I spend with my kids. I really want to spend more time with my kids. What option have I got ?

Our Response:
Your only option is to apply for a child arrangement order (if you wish to spend more time with your kids and your ex will not agree), please see link here and/ or a Specific Issue Order, please see link here. However, if you apply to court, please leave yourself and the court plenty of time for the case to be heard. It's probably best not to bok the holiday until after the court has made the decision.
SeparatedDads - 10-Jul-18 @ 12:34 PM
I have two kids with my , broke up two years ago. I have always have the older daughter every Saturday and Sunday, she however changed this to Sunday only which I am not happy about but I accepted regardless. I am planning to take my big daughter to Disney just for a weekend, she is refusing to let without no reason. Tried everything I could including talking to her parent she still saying no and threatening to reduce the hours I spend with my kids . I really want to spend more time with my kids . What option have I got ?
Fther - 9-Jul-18 @ 10:29 PM
Don’t give up or cave in! One day kids see hear and make their own minds up .
Saz - 5-Jul-18 @ 11:31 PM
Loving daddy - Your Question:
Hey I split with my ex gfriend 5 years ago offered everything from mediation to minute. Of agreement 8 weeks ago I asked my ex to take the kids abroad she says yeh I book a great family holiday from dolphins to snorkling she then told me no after I booked what's my stand it's in 5n halfweeks awayb

Our Response:
In cases of disagreement and where mediation fails, then your only recourse is to apply to court. However, court can take time and it is unlikely if you are going in five weeks that your case will be heard in time. I can only advise that you seek legal advice. A solicitor's letter outlining your previous agreement and the repercussions of what your actions will be if your ex doesn't allow the holiday to take place, may help.
SeparatedDads - 4-Jun-18 @ 9:56 AM
Hey I split with my ex gfriend 5 years ago offered everything from mediation to minute. Of agreement 8 weeks ago I asked my ex to take the kids abroad she saysyeh I book a great family holiday from dolphins to snorkling she then told me no after I booked what's my stand it's in 5n halfweeks awayb
Loving daddy - 3-Jun-18 @ 12:44 PM
pjt3863 - Your Question:
Thank you for your response. and my son has his daughter sleeping at ours 2 nights a week. (Tuesday and Saturday) my wife looks after her on a Wednesday to save nursery costs and he spends sunday with her

Our Response:
If your son pushes the matter to mediation and/or as a last resort court, then he stands a better chance if access and contact is frequent and overnight. However, it is impossible to predict what a court may decide. Also, any application to court must be well in advance of the holiday yoru son wishes to book, as it takes time to come to court.
SeparatedDads - 24-Apr-18 @ 10:55 AM
thank you for your response. and my son has his daughter sleeping at ours 2 nights a week. (Tuesday and Saturday) my wife looks after her on a Wednesday to save nursery costs and he spends sunday with her
pjt3863 - 23-Apr-18 @ 5:30 PM
pjt3863 - Your Question:
My son has a 2 yr old daughter (3 in oct) and split from her mum last year, they had a family holiday with her parents organised for this sept. their family are still going on this holiday. my son asked if he could take his daughter away for a holiday (abroad) in sept, but was told she would rather he didn't as it would mean she was going away more or less as soon as she came home from their holiday and she thought his daughter was too young for this, my son accepted this although not really happy. he has just asked today if he can take his daughter away (again abroad) next june. his mum replied she doesn't know because it will mean she will be without her for a while and she doesn't want this. it seems to us she has not got her daughter, or my sons feelings at heart but is only thinking of her own selfish reasons. where does he stand on this and can he do anything?

Our Response:
In the first instance, mediation would be the best option for your son to suggest to his ex please see link here . If his ex refuses to discuss the matter and your son wishes to pursue it, the next option would be to take the matter to court for a Specific Issue Order, please see link here . However, this can be stressful, so where possible mutual negotiation is key. It is understandable that any primary carer will miss being without their child, it's a natural/protective emotion when the child is young. However, there are two parents in the relationship with their child and therefore both wish to spend time with their child. Much also depends upon how often your son sees his child as to what the court may decide. As in all cases, the court’s main concern is the welfare of the child in question. The court will always put the child’s best interests first and this main issue will determine the outcome of any application for an order.
SeparatedDads - 23-Apr-18 @ 9:37 AM
my son has a 2 yr old daughter (3 in oct) and split from her mum last year, they had a family holiday with her parents organised for this sept. their family are still going on this holiday. my son asked if he could take his daughter away for a holiday (abroad) in sept, but was told she would rather he didn't as it would mean she was going away more or less as soon as she came home from their holiday and she thought his daughter was too young for this, my son accepted this although not really happy. he has just asked today if he can take his daughter away (again abroad) next june. his mum replied she doesn't know because it will mean she will be without her for a while and she doesn't want this. it seems to us she has not got her daughter, or my sons feelings at heart but is only thinking of her own selfish reasons. where does he stand on this and can he do anything?
pjt3863 - 22-Apr-18 @ 5:29 PM
Hi I am a mum of a 1 year old boy and his dad walked out on us at 6 months old for another woman, he is on the birth certificate. He sees his son on a Monday and Tuesday Does he have a right to take our son away for 4 days or can I say no to that?
K - 7-Mar-18 @ 9:50 AM
RealMrsB - Your Question:
HiI'm a mother and primary carer of my 16 yr old. His absent father wants to arrange a trip to his new holiday home abroad to which I've no objection. However upon further discussion with my 16 yr old he accidentally dropped in the fact that he will fly there and back alone. I don't think he is responsible or mature enough to do this yet. it's worrying me, can I legally insist he is with him on the trip and journey to and from his holiday home.

Our Response:
If you cannot agree between you and your son's father, then mediation may be an option to consider, please see link here.
SeparatedDads - 5-Mar-18 @ 3:47 PM
Hi I'm a mother and primary carer of my 16 yr old. His absent father wants to arrange a trip to his new holiday home abroad to which I've no objection. However upon further discussion with my 16 yr old he accidentally dropped in the fact that he will fly there and back alone. I don't think he is responsible or mature enough to do this yet. it's worrying me, can I legally insist he is with him on the trip and journey to and from his holiday home.
RealMrsB - 2-Mar-18 @ 11:36 PM
HI my name is Anna and i split from my ex partner when i was 7 weeks pregnant with his child. However being who I am I did not want my child raised not knowing his Father and arranged for him to have rights to see him. He is now 9 years old and spends every Wednesday and one to two nights on a weekend which has always been agreed between ourselves. He is now married with another child and I have just recieved a phone call from him to say he is going for joint custody as he wants access to his school and medical records I have told him he can have access but he will not comply and wants to take me to mediation and apply for extra nightsto have my child. I am really worried the child is my life and brought him up on my own the Father denied the child was even his when I was pregnant I dont know what I can do as I have complied with every time he wanted access I have even let him take him on family holidays I am broken hearted can you help me please
annad - 26-Jan-18 @ 8:34 PM
@TheNewWife - it would be very difficult to claw back the money even if she did sign. Even if your husband applied for something such as a Specific Issue Order through the Bristish courts, if his ex gave a valid reason why the kids couldn't go such as illness etc, then there really would be little he could do to get the money returned.
Rich - 27-Jun-17 @ 11:55 AM
My husband emigrated from England to Canada 5 years ago. His ex lives in England with their 2 kids, aged 14 & 16. She has finally agreed to allow them to come out to us for 2 weeks this summer. However, she is making him fly to England to pick the kids up and then fly home with them. Needless to say this is a HUGE financial burden for us. If she decides after we have booked the tickets that she will not let them come (this is not outside the realm of possibility, unfortunately) will we have any recourse? There are no orders in place but my husband has continued to pay maintenance since he left. We were thinking of drafting a letter that if she stops the travel, that will be her maintenance money until the tickets are paid up. Would such a letter hold up so that he can continue to see his kids via Facetime and yearly visits to England? The price of flights would equal about a year's worth of maintenance. She said she will sign a letter but only because she doesn't think it will mean a thing.
TheNewWife - 26-Jun-17 @ 4:26 PM
NB SCOTTISH LAW My wife and I are separated. I have custody of our two sons, and they both live with me. I intend to take them abroad with me for two weeks. However, I fear that my wife may try to stop me from doing so. Can she do this?
xxxx - 24-May-17 @ 7:50 PM
gonk - Your Question:
A hopefully simple question. I have been separated from my wife for 18 months now, the children are with her 8 and 14 yrs. No arrangements are in place, no court orders etc. I see them fairly regularly, but she will not allow me to have them on my own. She is treating the children as 'property'. My question is; I have muted I want to take them on holiday (UK) in the school holidays, she has blankly refused. Can I get a court to make an order that I be allowed to take my two children on a week holiday and have done with it?

Our Response:
Yes, if your ex refuses you access, you can apply for a C100 contact order and/or a Specific Issue Order, link here if you wish to take your children abroad. As in all cases, the court’s main concern is the welfare of the child in question. The court will always put the child’s best interests first and this main issue will determine the outcome of any application for an order. Please also keep in mind it takes to for a SIO to be heard in court. Therefore, please make sure you apply well ahead.
SeparatedDads - 29-Mar-17 @ 10:24 AM
A hopefully simple question... I have been separated from my wife for 18 months now, the children are with her8and 14 yrs. No arrangements are in place, no court orders etc. I see them fairly regularly, but she will not allow me to have them on my own. She is treating the children as 'property'. My question is;I have muted I want to take them on holiday (UK) in the school holidays, she has blankly refused. Can I get a court to make an order that I be allowed to take my two children on a week holiday and have done with it?
gonk - 28-Mar-17 @ 12:18 PM
I split with my ex 4 years ago and since then have had my son at least once overnight every weekend and twice overnight every other weekend. I have never missed a maintenance payment, a school parents evening, a school play, sportsday and never once failed to pick him up or drop him off when arranged. I have taken him on holiday with her permission within the uk for the last 3 summers. I now wish to take him abroad on holiday as would like to guarantee some good weather. she is refusing to allow this as she now falsely accuses me of being an alcoholic (which is complete nonsense) and demands I take something called a 'hair strand test' before she allows me to take him. if I took this 'test' I know 100% there would be no reason for me not to take him. However, I'm afraid to book anything as I know nearer the time she would just come up with another reason for not letting him go. do I have to see a solicitor or go to court to get something drawn up officially so she cannot refuse me taking him abroad?
albolts - 3-Mar-17 @ 1:03 PM
Stoo - Your Question:
I'm wanting to go on holiday with my three kids. Its in the same country I live (Scotland) so no passport needed. My ex is fine with this, but doesn't want my girlfriend to go with me. Does she have the right to stop me? I've been with my ex 7 month on the day we leave and the kids love her and she has a daughter of her own. My ex is just being awkward and just wants to make my life hell. She can't stand the fact I'm happy and moved on. My mum & dad will also be coming along so the kids are safe and will be well looked after. I'm only a phone call away and driving distances away if she needed to contact the lids or if anything happened. My ex surly can't stop me taking kids on holiday with my girlfriend who has a clean record and works with kids??? Where do I stand with this?

Our Response:
You would have to apply for a specific issue order through the courts if your ex refuses to give consent to let your kids go with you, please see link here.
SeparatedDads - 17-Jan-17 @ 3:03 PM
I'm wanting to go on holiday with my three kids. Its in the same country I live (Scotland) so no passport needed. My ex is fine with this, but doesn't want my girlfriend to go with me. Does she have the right to stop me? I've been with my ex 7 month on the day we leave and the kids love her and she has a daughter of her own. My ex is just being awkward and just wants to make my life hell. She can't stand the fact I'm happy and moved on. My mum & dad will also be coming along so the kids are safe and will be well looked after. I'm only a phone call away and driving distances away if she needed to contact the lids or if anything happened. My ex surly can't stop me taking kids on holiday with my girlfriend who has a clean record and works with kids??? Where do I stand with this?
Stoo - 17-Jan-17 @ 7:00 AM
I have been separated from my ex for about 9 months, we jointly care for our 3 young children sharing about 3.5 days a week each. The situation generally remains amicable provided I am agreable with anything my ex stipulates. However we have always suffered a strong narcisstic influence from my in laws, (grandparents). In a nutshell they have significant financial influence compared to me, often using this to act in a way that ingnores the that of parental responsibility and what is considered best the children. I have heard indirectly that the grandparents, have planned overseas holidays with my children next year. I requested information and have been told it's "none of my business.... as it's thier money and thier grandchildren" I don't suspect there is intention for any foul play, but I do feel my responsibility as a parent and right to make the best choices for my own children, plus my desires to enjoy a holiday with them has been intentionally disregarded for narcissistic self gratification.
Scooter_nuts - 31-Dec-16 @ 8:41 PM
Hi, I'm looking to take my 3 year old daughter to Great Yarmouth for a week next year. I fear my ex may not let me take her, can she legally stop me? As a passport isn't needed. I have parental responsibility as I'm on the birth certificate. Also my ex took my daughter to Denmark without consulting me. How is this possible without my permission?
Mitch - 30-Dec-16 @ 8:31 PM
Me and my wife have separated recently 8 weeks . We were going to wales to see her sister with the 2 children, but they have fallen out as they don't approve on what she has done to end our marriage. can she stop me from taking the children to see there auntie and cousin at christmas.Thanks
Brett74 - 18-Nov-16 @ 11:35 AM
Hi, I have 2 children from a previous relationship and have been to court about access and he was granted every other weekend and phone call's on a Mon and Wed, I have booked a 3 day break for me and our children but it falls on one of my ex's weekends(only the Sunday), I have asked him if he minded me taking them and given plenty of notice of my intent, I got no reply, my girls have recently come back from a weekend with their father and he has discussed this with them (although he was told not to discuss anything with my children regarding me and my life by a CAFCAS officer) he told our children that he would not allow this to happen unless he got certain things back!! our children are very upset that they're not able to go and see's it as my fault because of what daddy said, it is only 5 hours out of his last day of the weekend and he will not let me take them away, any advice as to what I can do would be very helpful, we are due to go away at the end of the month for Halloween, I have bent over backwards to accommodate this man (late phone calls, extra visitation when he asks) but he will not budge one inch when I ask !
Bojangles - 3-Oct-16 @ 3:51 PM
jimbob - Your Question:
I have a cart order to see my daughter on Saturday and Sundays my daughter just said to me, she's going on holiday on Thursday for a week but she said I an not suppose to know about it can my ex do that without telling me

Our Response:
This is always a tricky question to answer, therefore please see article: Breach of Contact or Residence Order: What to Do, here. However, should you wish to take this matter to court to have the order enforced, you would not get a hearing in time. Therefore, if you are unhappy about this matter you may wish to ask your solicitor to draft a letter to your ex reminding her of her obligations and request alternative access arrangements. If you send a solicitor's letter then you also have evidence if she tries to change the order again without notice.
SeparatedDads - 22-Aug-16 @ 12:39 PM
I have a cart order to see my daughter on Saturday and Sundays my daughter just said to me, she's going on holiday on Thursday for a week but she said I an not suppose to know about it can my ex do that without telling me
jimbob - 21-Aug-16 @ 8:21 PM
chatts - Your Question:
My son lives with his mother and she has booked a holiday abroad to a country where I have huge doubts about the security situation, do I have any legal recourse to prevent her from taking him abroad.

Our Response:
Much depends on when the holiday is. Your option would be to apply for a Prohibited Steps Order. A PSO is an order granted by the court in family cases which prevents either parent from carrying out certain events or making specific trips with their children without the express permission of the other parent. However, you would have to apply in good time for the matter to be able to be heard in court. Therefore, I suggest you seek legal advice.
SeparatedDads - 27-Jul-16 @ 11:30 AM
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