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Travel and your shared custody arrangement

Travel can be an exciting way to introduce your child to new places and new experiences. Travel can also give them the opportunity to meet family members and friends that they otherwise would not have met.

However, if you and your child’s other parent share custody, travel can be a more complicated endeavor. What should you know about traveling with your child when you are not their sole custodial parent?

How are travel and your custodial arrangement handled in Texas?

Each family’s arrangement is unique, but generally, parents can travel with their child during their parenting time. However, some court orders put specific restrictions on parents’ ability to travel with their child.

Your order, for example, may specify that you cannot travel over state lines without the consent of your child’s other parent. Your court order may also specify what information you must give the other parent when making travel plans. This makes it particularly important to review your custody order before making travel plans.

How can you address travel with your child’s other parent?

While you may have the right to travel with your child during your court-ordered parenting time, it is still important to discuss this travel with their other parent long before the trip arrives. Keeping them informed about where you will go, your travel itinerary and what you intend to do can help foster a stronger co-parenting relationship. It also helps ensure that they have the information they need in an emergency.

For international travel, you may want to carry specific documents with you on your travels. These might include a written record of the other parent’s permission to travel.

In fact, you may want to address travel in your parenting plan to ensure that you have the same expectations. When creating your parenting plan, outlining what information each parent must provide, how you will handle contact during longer trips and other details can make future travel planning easier. You may also want to address how you will handle travel plans that may interrupt the other parent’s usual parenting time.

By addressing these details early, you can plan family trips with greater confidence and focus on enjoying travel with your child.

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