It can be the case at the point of family breakdown, that one of the parents finds themselves here, living in Australia, with their support network being in an overseas country. It is understandable at such a time, that such a parent would want to return “home” to family and friends. Difficulties arise however, when the other parent wishes to remain living in Australia. This situation can cause great concern for the parent wishing to return “home” with the child, as well as for the other parent who does not want the child to go.
It is not an easy thing to convince a court to make an order which allows a parent to take the child to live overseas and it may be tempting in such circumstances, for a parent to relocate with the child without a court order and without informing the other parent. If the parent has the child and the child’s passport in their possession, there may be nothing preventing the parent from leaving Australia with the child. If the child is eligible to be issued a passport by a foreign country, a parent might be able to obtain such a passport for the child, without the other parent’s signature.
In circumstances where a parent is genuinely concerned that the other parent is planning to relocate with the child overseas, they can have the child placed on the Airport Watch List by the Australian Federal Police. To do this the parent must make an application to the Federal Circuit Court of Australia, seeking an order that the child be placed on the Airport Watch List. Time is of the essence in such matters and knowing what you are doing is important. Springwood Lawyers has the expertise to assist you in such circumstances.