A hostile divorce in which child custody has been contested can have a devastating effect on the family unit.
Sadly this has resulted in cases of parents removing their children from South Africa without the permission of the other parent in an effort to claim full custody. This is regarded as child abduction in the eyes of the law and can lead to criminal proceedings against the abducting parent.
In South Africa both parents must give written permission for children to obtain a passport, and if one parent wishes to leave the country with their child, they must have the written permission of the other parent to do so.
Child Abduction or Child Travel Restrictions Revised
In an effort to reduce child abduction, new regulations are being introduced that will require all children travelling in and out of South Africa to present the following documents:
- A valid passport
- An unabridged birth certificate that lists the names of both their mother and father which can be obtained from the Department of Home Affairs
- A signed affidavit from non-accompanying parents providing permission for the child to leave South Africa.