Monday, November 11, 2013

Transporting Minor Children Between Parents

When parents are divorcing and are creating a parenting plan, there are times when they must negotiate sending children significant distances for visits. New Jersey’s laws governing custody and parenting time specify that both parents should spend significant quality time with their children.

Sometimes, minor children might travel alone to see a parent. If the distance is great and the parents are not able to travel by car, some children might travel unaccompanied by train or airplane. Every child is different, and some may not be mature enough to travel safely alone. This must be taken into consideration when parents construct their parenting plan.


On Amtrak, children age 12 and under may not travel unaccompanied. Unaccompanied teenagers 13 to 16 years old must adhere to Amtrak’s regulations, including:

No transfers or connections are allowed.
Travel must be in one day.
Stations must be staffed.
A parent must accompany the child to the station and a parent must meet the child at the destination.
The child must wear a wristband issued by Amtrak.
Children cannot have life-threatening food allergies.
Children traveling alone must pay the adult fare.

Air travel

Each airline has its own policies regarding unaccompanied minors (UM). Always check with the specific airline prior to booking. Most airlines charge a fee (typically $50 to $100) for supervising a child traveling alone under the age of 12. Children under the age of 5 are not permitted to fly unaccompanied. The following guidelines apply to most domestic airlines, though there are variations:

UMs generally are not allowed to book on the last flight of a given day.
Many airlines block UMs from connecting flights.
Some airlines allow scheduled stops without transfers.
Young adults 15 to 17 years old might have the option to fly as UMs.


Long car trips might be inconvenient for busy working parents, but they can be great fun for children. If you can spare the time, plan a road trip with your kids. Buy a map, see the sights, take your time and enjoy the time together.

If you are divorcing, the divorce attorneys at Murano & Roth, LLC would like to assist you in creating or revising your shared parenting plan. Call our Oradell, New Jersey office at 201.265.3400 or contact us online to schedule your free consultation.

This blog posting and the information on our website is for general information purposes only. Nothing within it, within any responses, comments, emails, answers, blogs or attachments, should be considered legal advice. Our website and our blogs, including this blog, does not form any attorney client relationship, and this office does not represent you in any way. Keep in mind that since only very general information is provided on our website and within our blogs, you cannot rely upon any of the information as legal advice, as it might not apply to, or be accurate relative to your specific situation and facts.

By Jason D. Roth

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