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Can my former spouse take the children overseas without my knowledge or consent?

Written by Leanne Abela
6 March 2018

Although your former spouse should obtain your consent before any international travel much will depend on where the children’s passports are located. Your former spouse will require the children’s passport details to book airfares for international travel and for visa purposes. If you hold the children’s passports your former spouse will be unable to travel with the children.

If your former spouse holds the children’s passports and you are concerned that the children may leave the country without your knowledge or permission then you should immediately seek legal advice and make an urgent application to the Family Court or the Federal Circuit Court for an “Airport Watch List Order” seeking to prevent the children from leaving Australia.

You may also go to the Court yourself located at 305 William Street, Melbourne, to make an application to place the children’s names on the Airport Watch List.

If the order is granted the Australian Federal Police will prevent the children from leaving Australia.



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