Taking children between France and the UK

I’ve found out that since December 2016, if you want your child to travel from France to the UK with relatives or friends, but without their parents, you need to complete a French form giving consent to the travel, with a photocopy of your passport.

Would this apply to a British child going home from France with her aunt and uncle? We have no grandchildren, but elder son and his wife come over each summer with at least one of daughter-in-law’s nieces or nephews. I’d hate them to find out at the border after their visit to us in August that the niece couldn’t go home!

If true, then yes they can’t do it.
Wonderful (utterly stupid) idea especially if it’s not widely known, but on the plus side, more paperwork :joy:, more trees to cut down​:joy: = more people employed etc

It is primarily to stop idiotic misguided 16 and 17 year olds flying off to Turkey on Easyjet and then going off to join Isis. Not difficult to write a letter authorising it if you are foreign resident and if you live in France you get the form at the Mairie, no need for a new one every trip, you can authorise travel eg for a whole year or until the child is of age.


If they have a British passport it does NOT apply - whatever the school and anyone else might tell you.
But yes, I agree with @vero that it is not a bad thing.

Why is it on sites like this that any regulation different from the all knowing Anglosphere is dismissed as a job creation project for the civil servant? This rule is in part a response to the Hague Convention on Parental Responsability and Child Protection. It is after all not unknown for children to be taken abroad by Aunty for a little bit of cultural cutting without parental consent or for a child to be “rescued” from its divorcing parents by grandpa and grandma.


The French Government Website clearly states that the need for extra paperwork applies to children who habitually live in France and who wish to go abroad …see the link below for full details.

Two possibilities are covered: the child who lives in France… and the child who visits France from another country.


Seems very clear… and reasonable… to me.

and this website explains why the new law has come into force…

Surely if it’s true then, no, they can’t do it.
I had a colleague who had a Arsenal season ticket and regularly travelled back to the UK with friends of her children. She started carrying photocopies of their parents’ passports and signed permission letters after long delays at Calais a couple of times. This regulation might therefore be a useful addition to many people as well being a useful step towards child protection.
The regulation does not depend upon the child’s passport but upon where they live. A French resident with a British passport is covered by this.

Thanks for that link, Stella. I had found the form and explanation, https://www.service-public.fr/particuliers/vosdroits/F34070 which seemed a bit ambiguous, but this is more helpful by far. Some officials are more officious than others so I’d rather the niece carried a form she didn’t need than got delayed for not having one she did need, so we may end up with an English letter and a French form just in case. Even with the traditional letter from the parents, a photocopy of their passport is a good idea as it covers the back of whoever checks the passports in or out of France.

Now the nieces are teenagers their activities need to be confirmed, particularly if they are stopped while with their uncle, however innocent the trip may be. None of the family objects to needing authorisation docs, and we quite understand why they are necessary. I even have a copy of our birth and marriage certs in my travel wallet, which admittedly I only needed when my mother died, as they take up no space and would almost certainly be in the wrong country if I did need them.

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Diana… I quite understand you not wishing to be caught out…better to have too many forms than not enough.

This is the bit that relates to British children of your enquiry… going home after a visit to France:

Un enfant étranger qui vit à l’étranger et qui séjourne ou transite par la France n’a pas non plus à présenter d’autorisation de sortie du territoire. Il devra être muni des titres d’identité et de voyage exigés par son pays de destination.

A foreign child who lives abroad (not in France) and who visits or passes through France does not have to submit an authorization to leave the country. He must be in possession of the identity and travel documents required by his country of destination.