Reconsidering Dual Consent
Before a child may travel internationally, many countries require proof that both of the child’s parents consent. These “dual consent” requirements are aimed at preventing international child abduction, and many countries have adopted them as part of the coordinated effort to implement the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction. In recent years, international air carriers have been urged to impose similar requirements for all children traveling on international flights. Although well-intentioned, dual consent requirements pose significant harms, especially to children of single parents and parents subjected to domestic violence. This article explores the unintended consequences of dual consent requirements and proposes alternative approaches that mitigate the harms of dual consent while also protecting against child abduction.