As Spring Break and the summer approach, you may want to think about your travel plans if you are separated or divorced from the child’s other parent. If you already have a custody schedule in place, you should make sure that you abide by the terms of the Agreement, which oftentimes includes giving notice to the other party in advance and providing your travel and contact information. Additionally, if you are going to travel abroad, you should think about how to secure a passport for your minor children. The rules changed as of February 1, 2008, so that while they used to apply to minors under the age of 14, the rules now will apply to minors under the age of 16. The following link lists the information that you will need to bring with you to obtain a passport for your child: http://travel.state.gov/passport/get/minors/minors_834.html#
You will not be able to secure a passport for your minor child if you do not have the other parent’s permission. If the other parent cannot/will not go with you to apply for the passport in person, you will need the other parent to sign and notarize a consent form for the passport. The consent form is on the state department’s website at the following link: http://travel.state.gov/passport/forms/ds3053/ds3053_846.html
Additionally, once you have travel plans, you need to have a notarized consent form from the other parent that you can leave the United States with your child. This will ensure that you do not have any trouble at the airport.
Although it sounds complicated, if you plan ahead, you will be able to ensure a relaxing trip with your child!