Skip to content
Freeths - Law firm

Taking a Child Abroad

Moving in the right direction

What is involved?

Moving to a new country can be very exciting, but there are many practical issues that you need to consider.

If you have children with a former partner, you may need to make an application to the court to relocate your child permanently overseas. When parents are separated or divorced, the consent of the other parent (or any other person with parental responsibility) is required before you can move to another country.

If the other parent does not agree to the child moving, you will need to apply to court to obtain an order to allow your child to move with you. This is never an easy decision for a Judge, and will involve careful consideration of many factors, including review of the plan to relocate, reasons for the move and future plans, the child’s current arrangements, and the involvement the child has with both parents.

The judge will need to see detailed information and proposals.

Click here to download our guide for taking a child abroad.

Why choose Freeths?

  • We are ranked in the top tier by both the Legal 500 and Chambers for family law advice
  • Our nationally renowned lawyers can advise on all issues relating to moving children abroad
  • You can trust our team to take a sensitive, empathetic approach to your personal situation
  • We offer advice and constructive dispute resolution, resolving issues without going to court
  • If we cannot help you reach an agreement our lawyers will represent you robustly in court

Call our friendly, professional family team to find out how we can help you.

Consideration is given to the impact of refusing permission to emigrate on the parent who wishes to leave, but the most important factor is the child’s welfare.

A judge will consider the child’s wishes, the motivation of both parents, and planning for the relocation itself and continued involvement of the other parent.

You may also need help from the court if you wish to move overseas without your children, as some visa applications require medical examinations to be carried out on the children of an emigrating parent – even if they are not going with them. This can be problematic if the parent and child are estranged, or the other parent refuses their consent. Our solicitors can help you to work through this together.

Key contacts

Fiona Wilson

0345 030 5643

Diana Copestake

Diana Copestake

0345 272 5674

Alternatively complete the form below:

Contact Us


"Definitely put their clients first. The firm is committed to establishing a close working relationship with the clients in order to facilitate the best possible outcome for them."

(Chambers & Partners, 2016)


"Thank you for all your help - it's been much appreciated."


"Extremely hardworking in family cases."

(The Legal 500, 2017)


"I'm eternally grateful for all that you have done because I couldn't have done it without you."

Client service

‘Doing the right thing’ is at the heart of Freeths. Find out more about our excellent client service and the strong set of values that guide the way we work.

Our values


Talk to us

Freeths are a leading national law firm with 13 offices across the UK. If you have a query about our services or just want to find out more, why not give us a call?

Contact: 03301 001 014

Choose an office:

Portfolio close
People CV Email

Remove All

Click here to email this list of people to a colleague.