Can My Ex Prevent Me From Taking My Child On Vacation?

Pittsburgh divorce lawyer Anna CiardiQuestion:

My ex-wife says I cannot take my child on a vacation during my court-ordered parenting time that is outlined in our child custody agreement.

Does she have the right to prohibit me from taking my child on vacation? Can she file kidnapping or contempt charges if I take our child on vacation even if she says no and I provide her with an itinerary and written letter of intent to travel?


I am unable to give you legal advice on divorce. I can give general divorce help for men, though, my knowledge is based on Pennsylvania divorce laws where I am licensed to practice.

Without reading the specific provisions of your child custody order, I am not sure whether your son’s mother can prevent you from taking a vacation with your son during your parenting time.

I will say that it is always desirable to have the permission of the other parent before taking a trip with your child. If she will not consent to the trip you should be able to file a motion in family court seeking the court’s permission for the trip.

That way, if your motion is granted and you take your vacation, your ex will definitely not be able to claim that you are in contempt of the child custody order.

Also, since it sounds like your order is vague when it comes to travel, you may want to consider filing for a modification of your order that lays out a specific procedure for vacations. This is likely to be an issue that will come up several more times, and you don’t want to have to file a motion each time you want to take a trip.

If you can get clear language in your order with regards to giving the other parent notice, etc., when taking a vacation it will save you a hassle in the future. You can also include language so that each of you will be informed with regard to the whereabouts of your son during vacations.

Remember, I am unable to provide you with anything more than divorce tips for men, so please consult with divorce lawyers for men in your jurisdiction.

To arrange an initial consultation to discuss divorce rights for men with a Cordell & Cordell attorney, including Pittsburgh Divorce Lawyer Anna M. Ciardi, contact Cordell & Cordell.

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One comment on “Can My Ex Prevent Me From Taking My Child On Vacation?

    My ex has visitation every other weekend for my 15 year old daughter. How ever I want to send her on vacation and won’t come back on time of his weekend could I get in trouble?

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