Advice forum

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

Co-parenting between countries: passports and ID card possession

Liselotte Peterson
22.09.2023 13:15:10



My little family recently moved to Finland in January 2023. My family is me, my partner, our almost 2 year old, and my oldest son - from my previous relationship, who just turned 5.

My ex-husband, the father of my first born, was completely OK with the move and we have documentation of all of this.

My oldest son has been to visit his father in France in June 2023, I flew with him (and flew back the same day) - and the same to pick him up again. All went very smoothly, and I explained the ins-and-outs of next time, when he will fly as an unaccompanied minor.

His father would like him to visit again in the next month or two.

His father and I cannot agree on the following 2 things, which is why I'd like other parents feedback.
Son can fly accompanied to France, with his passport. However, I refuse to give my son (and therefore his father in France) the passport, in the fear that the father may switch the passport for the French ID card on his return to Finland.
His father refuses to send his ID card by post so that he can travel to and from Finland. He likes to keep son's ID card as a 'memorabilia', and does not want me to have it.

The reason I do not trust son's father with the passport, is because, when I left him when our son was a baby, the father held on to the passport for 3 years, refused to hand it over - thus meaning I could not see any of my family for 3 years, as my son had no travel document (my family lives all over the world).

I even went to court to obtain the passport, and the judges ordered the father to hand the passport over, including the ID card. Despite the paperwork, he only handed over the passport. Police did not help as legally the father has a 'right' to have the passport in his possession as a legal guardian.

Context: with ID card, the person can only travel in Europe. With passport, the person can travel internationally. Thus, if the father keeps his passport hostage again... you get my drift...

Father says he now holds no grudges, and 'will' send son back to Finland with his passport, but I just do not trust him.

Any experiences with this sort of thing?

Replies (1)

Oscar from amicable
26.10.2023 14:43:56

Hi Liselotte,

Thank you for getting in touch.

As this is an international issue, you may find The International Family Law Group LLP guide useful. They specialise in international family law issues, so they will be able to advise you on this.

We also have a podcast episode on this topic, which you can listen to here and our co-parenting app can be downloaded internationally.

We wish you the best of luck moving forward.


If you are happy for amicable to contact you in the future for marketing purposes, as well as for help and advice on divorce and separation then please tick the boxes below to tell us all the ways you would prefer to hear from us. You can read about how amicable may use your data here, and withdraw your consent at any time.

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.