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Can you travel with your child outside of the custody schedule?

On Behalf of | May 24, 2024 | Child Custody

During the summer vacation, many parents want to take trips or travel with their children. This is true both for married and divorced couples, but it can be more complicated for divorced couples because they have a custody schedule in place – and it’s very important not to violate that court order.

Often, this custody schedule will provide weekly guidelines. For instance, a child may live with one parent for a week and then live with the other parent the following week. There are also more complex options like a 2-2-3 schedule. But whatever schedule is in place, it doesn’t account for a two-week vacation. So are parents still allowed to travel, even though they’re sharing custody?

It should be addressed in advance

Yes, trips are still possible, but co-parents need to communicate. In some cases, the child custody schedule will be written specifically to address these travel plans. Each parent may get two weeks of uninterrupted parenting time to travel during the summer, for example. They can book hotels, book flights and plan around this alteration to the normal schedule.

In other cases, the custody order will simply say that the parent who wants to travel has to clear it with the other co-parent first. This often works very well if the two are on relatively good terms and have gone through an amicable divorce. Notice still has to be provided so the other co-parent understands where the child is at all times, but the parents can simply work together to make the trip possible.

As you can see, summer vacation makes custody issues a bit more complicated. You must understand your legal options at this time.