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Travel Abroad of 16 Year Old of Divorced Parents

by Gayle
(Seattle, King County USA)

Question: The mother is the designated custodian of a 16-year-old. Can the 16-year-old get a passport without the father's permission? Can the 16-year-old travel abroad without the father's permission?


All reside in Washington State. The parenting plan says of travel:

"Each parent shall be permitted to travel with the child that is in their primary care within the United States and to Canada without the consent of the other parent. Neither child shall travel to Pakistan so long as the U. S. Department of State has (current) travel warnings for United State Citizens warning against non-essential travel to Pakistan. The parent wishing to travel to Pakistan must also have the written permission of the other parent."

Answer: I will attempt to answer your questions in their order.

Can the 16-year-old get a passport without the father's permission?

If the mother has sole legal custody, then the father's permission in not necessary. If the parents have shared custody, then consent may be necessary.

Notarized parental consent is required from the non-applying parent for minors age 15 and younger. Minors ages 16 and 17 "may be requested to provide written parental consent for a child age 16 or 17 if it is not implied on the application".

The agent who attends to the minor at the time he or she submits the passport application will inform him or her as to whether there is a need to submit a parental consent form or not.

Can the 16-year-old travel abroad without the father's permission?

According to the parenting plan above, the only destination that the minor can travel outside the United States without consent of the non-primary care parent is Canada. This implies that travel to any other destination outside the U.S. must have the consent of the non-primary care parent.

Comments for Travel Abroad of 16 Year Old of Divorced Parents

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Travling alone
by: Anonymous

Question: Hi, I am 17 years old. Do I need my parent's consent to travel from the Dominican Republic to the United States?

Answer: Please contact the CBP for requirements for entry into the United States.

My son is 16 years old
by: Eliene

Question: I would like to travel with my son who is 16 years old to the Dominican Republic next month but I do not have his father's authorization. Do I need it?

Answer: Minors (children under 18) who are citizens (including dual citizens) or legal residents of the Dominican Republic, if not accompanied by both parents or legal guardian(s), are required to present official proof of parental consent to travel. If your son is not a citizen, this consent MAY NOT be required.

Please contact the Embassy of The Dominican Republic for confirmation.

16 Traveling out of the US.
by: Anonymous

Question: Hello, my son is 16, and his father and I have equal joint custody. His father gave verbal permission to obtain his passport so we got it. We want to visit family in Central America this summer.

Now his father said he never gave permission for the passport just to be difficult and cause problems. However, he did say he could go abroad. My question is, can his father file something with the children's passport issuance alert program or some other agency to stop him from going abroad just to cause problems? Thank you.

Answer: Since the passport has already been issued, you should not worry about the Children's Passport Issuance Alert Program. Even if the father enrolls your child in the program, it will not matter since he is already 16. The next time he applies for a passport will be as an adult.

With regard to travel, the father is well within his parental rights to restrict travel through a court order. He may get a court order to require you to obtain his consent before the minor can travel overseas. Also, some countries require consent from the non-traveling custodial parent if only one is traveling with the minor. You have to check with your destination regarding this.

16 yr old with divorced parents
by: Anonymous

Question: I'm 16 and trying to travel to Pennsylvania on my own. My parents are divorced and shared custody but my dad is out of the picture for years already. Do I still need his consent?

Answer: Parental consent is not required for domestic travel. If you are currently in the United States and are just traveling to another state, you should not need consent from your parents. You should get one from your mother, though, just in case.

Traveling at 17 without parental consent
by: Anonymous

Question: I want to fly to Georgia to see my boyfriend and I live in New York. Do I need parental consent to fly from New York to Georgia as a 17-year-old?

Answer: Consent is not required for domestic travel.

Flying domestically at 16 without both parents consent
by: Anonymous

Question: My boyfriend is planning to fly me out of my home state of Florida to his state for only a few days. I am 16 and he is 17. We’re both within the laws of consent for our states and we’re above the age to fly/purchase tickets not only unaccompanied but also without parent consent. My only concern is if he would get into any legal trouble for me not asking my parent’s permission beforehand.

Answer: It is best that you seek permission from your parents to avoid any trouble. Please contact the airline you are flying with for further advice.

Thank you

Canada to USA travel kids 15&16
by: Father

Question:We have joint custody but kids (15 & 16 years old) live with father full-time in Canada. We are Canadian citizens. Planning vacation to the US. Mother disagrees with trip despite telling kids it was ok. If we get to the airport and she calls in advance to report her disagreement will we be denied our flights to the US? We’ll lose everything if that happens.

Answer: Please contact the CBP regarding your concern.

Hawaii from Los Angeles
by: Anonymous

Question: Do I need any permission from the mother or we will be okay as father and daughter (17 years old) traveling with me for vacation?

Answer: You should be okay.

We are US citizens wanting to travel from Chicago to Charlotte
by: Anonymous

Question: There are 4 of us, 3 of us are 17 and 1 is 16. What parental requirements are required for the ability to actually go and after landing in Charlotte which we have no legal guardian in.

Answer: Minors age 12 to 17 can travel alone on any domestic flight without restrictions. There are no special requirements but you do need to present valid government-issued IDs.

Please contact the airline you are flying with to verify requirements.

Traveling from Ecuador to US
by: Anonymous

Question: My brother is 16 years old. He is traveling with my younger brother but my father lives in Ecuador. Does he need his permission for my brother to be able to go to the United States?

Answer: Please contact the CBP regarding entry to the United States.

16yrs old traveling to Canada from Peru
by: Miguel Valdez

Question: It says that a 16 yrs old can travel to Canada without one of the parents consent, can it do so traveling from Peru to Canada?

Answer: Please contact Canada Border Service Agency for questions regarding entry to Canada.

No Permission?
by: Anonymous

Question: Is it possible for a 16-year-old to fly to Asia alone without parental consent? Or do they absolutely have to have at least one parent sign for them?

Answer: The answer depends on the requirements of the country/s he/she is visiting. Please contact the embassy of the minor's destination to find out if parental consent is an absolute requirement.

Greece
by: Dawb

Question: My daughter wants to go on a school trip to Greece. She has a passport and is 17 years old. Her father and I are divorced and we have joint custody. Will she have to have a consent letter from him in order to travel outside the USA? I will not be going but her grandmother will?

Answer: At 17, she should be able to travel without her father's consent. Having said that, requirements change without prior notice. Please contact the Embassy of Greece for the latest entry requirements.

Going to guatemala
by: Anonymous

Question: I am planning for my daughter to go to Guatemala in July but I want to know If I need permission from her father. We are divorced. He isn’t in her life and doesn’t have any communication with her, he is totally out of the picture. My daughter is 16.

Answer: Please contact the Embassy of Guatemala for heir regulations on minors traveling to their country.

Travel
by: Anonymous

Question: My brother is 17 years old living in Ecuador. He’s a U.S. citizen but wants to know if he can travel without my parents consent. They do not want to allow him to leave and he has no information on how to renew is American passport.

Answer: At 17, parental consent to travel may not be required. Also, he can apply for his passport without parental presence if he can present his own government issued ID. Please have him contact the U.S. Embassy in Quito for more information.

Traveling to Aruba
by: Anonymous

Question: I am traveling with my 16-year-old child to Aruba for a one-week vacation . Do I need a written permission from my ex for my child to travel with me?

Answer: Consent is generally not required for minors age 16 and 17. However, we recommend that you contact the airline you are flying with to confirm travel requirements.

16-year-old traveling out of the U.S.
by: Anonymous

Question: My daughter is 16 and traveling alone. I want to know ifI need the father’s permission for her to go outside the U.S. The father is out of the picture and he is not part of her life. There is no communication at all. Do I need his permission?

Answer: The answer depends on the requirements imposed by the destination country on unaccompanied minors. Please contact the embassy of the country your daughter is traveling to to find out.

Parental consent
by: Anonymous

Question: I am wondering. Do I need parental consent if I travel (air) from the U.S to UK? I am 17.

Answer: Please contact the British Embassy about their latest stand on the need for consent for minors traveling without parents or legal guardians.

Travel to Peru
by: Anonymous

Question: I'm planning to travel to Peru on vacation and I want to take my 16 and 17-year-old. Do I need their father's consent since they are traveling with me? We don't know where to find him and I have no idea where to start.

Thank you.

Answer: A consent may not be required since the children are traveling with a parent. Please contact the Embassy of Peru for confirmation.

Traveling to the U.K.
by: Anonymous

Question: I’m about to turn 17 and my birthday gift is to go to the United Kingdom. I will be flying alone to see family and friends in the U.K.. My parents are divorced and they have split custody of me. Do I need consent from both parents or just one?

Answer: Consent is not a requirement but is strongly recommended. Consent from both parents should cover all your bases.

16 YEAR OLD
by: Anonymous

Question: Can a 16 year old travel internationally to Jordan and back with only one parental consent? Will it make a difference if a family relative accompanies the minor? Mother has full custody of the child for past 7 years. Father is not in the picture nor does the child want to be in contact with the father. Please respond, thanks.

Answer: Please contact the Embassy of Jordan regarding consent requirements for minors.

Traveling with 17-year-old
by: Anonymous

Question: Do I need consent from father of a 17-year-old to travel if she has the right to refuse contact with him?

Answer: There should be no need. Please speak to a lawyer regarding legal ramifications.

Sending my son home to his mom
by: Anonymous

Question: I want to send my 16-year-old son to his mom in Brazil. Do I have to travel with him? He has American and Brazilian citizenship. We have joint custody.

Answer: The minor may travel unaccompanied but a statement of consent to travel may be required. Please contact the Embassy of Brazil or the airline your son is traveling with to verify special requirements.

Travel to Spain/Italy
by: Mom of 16-year-old

Question: I am divorced with joint custody of a 16 year-old daughter with my ex-husband. I am planning to take her to Spain and then on a cruise to Italy this summer. Her dad does not travel and constantly threatens that travel outside the U.S. can not happen without his permission, then deliberately refuses to sign consent forms until the last minute. Do I really need written consent now that she is 16 if she has a valid passport and I can prove I am her mother (we have two different last names).

Answer: There is no requirement for parental consent for travel to Schengen countries. Please contact the embassies of Spain and Italy for confirmation.

17 year old traveling with grandparents
by: Anonymous

Question: My 17 year old daughter will be traveling with her grandparents to the Dominican Republic. Her father and I are divorced with shared custody. Can she travel with her grandparents with one parental consent?

Answer: Please contact the Embassy of The Dominican Republic for entry requirements specific to minors not traveling with parents.

Travel
by: Anonymous

Question: I am 16 years old my dad wants me to travel to Italy for vacation with him for a week but my mom won't let him and has no reason for keeping me from seeing him. We don't live in the same country. Do I need her consent to travel with him?

Answer: You may not need your mother's permission since you will be traveling with a parent. Please contact the Embassy of Italy to confirm.

MEX to the US and back to MEX
by: Anonymous

Question: Hi, my daughter is 16 years old. She is an American citizen. We live in Cancun and she will be traveling to the US and back to Mexico with some friends. Do we need to have some kind of written permission to her? She already has her passport renewed.

Answer: The Mexican government have stringent rules for minors traveling without parents or legal guardians. Please provide your child with a statement of consent to travel detailing her trip in case she is asked for one at the border.

Travel with aunt overseas
by: Anonymous

Question: I want to take my nephew on cruise out of the U.K. to US. Parents are in the middle of a bad divorce. Will having a note from his mother with me be enough? She is parent with primary custody.

Answer: Please contact the U.S. Customs and Border Protection for requirements specific to children arriving by boat from the UK.

Cruise to Bahamas
by: Anonymous

Question: Do I need a consent from the father if I have sole custody of my 17-year-old daughter to take a cruise to the Bahamas?

Answer: Consent is not required but recommended in case questions arise.

Traveling to Turks and Caicos Island
by: Anonymous

Question: I am traveling to Turks with my 17-year-old daughter. Her father and I are divorced but she live with me; we have joint custody. Can I travel to this island without a consent? Her father lives overseas so its hard for me to get a consent letter.

Answer: There will be no need for a consent.

Travel to the Philippines
by: Gina B

Question: I want to take my daughter to the Philippines. She is 16 years old and I have joint custody -- I'm the primary custodian. Do I need consent from her father if she already has her passport?

Answer: Hello, Gina. We deleted your last name for security reasons. Your daughter may travel to the Philippines without issue as long as her passport meets the requirements. Since she will be traveling with a parent, she does not need any additional documentation.

We recommend that you contact the Philippine Embassy for the latest travel requirements for U.S. citizens.

Travel to Mexico, mom has primary custody
by: Anonymous

Question: I want to take my 16-year-old daughter to Mexico for a week to help her get extra credit in high school for Spanish and a family trip. I, the mom, have custody of her. Do we need her dad's permission? He has been estranged for over 3.5 years with no contact, visit, etc. I am not even sure how to find or get a hold of him. He abandoned her back then by never ever making any contact.

Answer: There is no need to get the father's consent since the child will be traveling with a parent.

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