UNCLASSIFIED (U)

3 FAM 3750

TRAVEL OF SEPARATED FAMILIES

(CT:PER-1093;   05-18-2022)
(Office of Origin:  GTM/ER/WLD)

3 FAM 3751  PURPOSE

(CT:PER-1093;   05-18-2022)
(Uniform State/USAID/USAGM/Commerce/Foreign Service Corps - USDA)
(Applies to Foreign Service Only)

a. This section provides the legal and regulatory basis:

(1)  In the case of one or more children below age 21 of a member of the Service assigned abroad, 1 (one) round trip per year to visit his or her parent(s) abroad;

(2)  For one of the child's parents to visit the child or children abroad if the child or children do not regularly reside with that parent and that parent is not receiving an education allowance or educational travel allowance for the child or children under section 5924(4) of title 5, United States Code.''

b. The term “separated” means separated by distance and does not necessarily refer to the parents’ status as spouses.

3 FAM 3752  AUTHORITY

(CT:PER-1093;   05-18-2022)
(Uniform State/USAID/USAGM/Commerce/Foreign Service Corps - USDA)
(Applies to Foreign Service Only)

Section 901 of the Foreign Service Act of 1980 (22 U.S.C. 4081), including 22 U.S.C. 4081(15), which allows the Secretary to pay for, "in the case of one or more children below age 21 of a member of the Service assigned abroad, the cost of one round-trip travel per year:

(1)  For each child to visit the member abroad if the child does not regularly reside with the member and the member is not receiving an education allowance or educational travel allowance for the child under section 5924(4) of title 5, United States Code (5 U.S.C. 5924(4)); or

(2)  For each child to visit the other parent of the child if the other parent resides in a country other than the country to which the member is assigned and the child regularly resides with the member and does not regularly attend school in the country in which the other parent resides, except that a payment under this paragraph may not exceed the cost of round-trip travel between the post to which the member is assigned and the residence of the other parent, or between the post to which the member is assigned and the residence of the child if the child does not reside with a parent;" or

(3)  For one of the child's parents to visit the child or children abroad if the child or children do not regularly reside with that parent and that parent is not receiving an education allowance or educational travel allowance for the child or children under section 5924(4) of title 5, United States Code.”

3 FAM 3753  ELIGIBILITY FOR TRAVEL

3 FAM 3753.1  Children and Members Eligible

(CT:PER-1093;   05-18-2022)
(Uniform State/USAID/USAGM/Commerce/Foreign Service Corps - USDA)
(Applies to Foreign Service Only)

Eligibility for this travel extends to children, Foreign Service members, and non-member parents of children of Foreign Service members except that children under legal guardianship need not be normally residing with the employee at post.  Accordingly:

(1)  Natural children, stepchildren, adopted children, and children under legal guardianship or comparable permanent custody arrangement of a Foreign Service member when the child does not regularly reside with the member, are authorized visitation travel to post under section 3 FAM 3751 and section 901(15)(A) of the Foreign Service Act of 1980 (22 U.S.C. 4081(15)(A));

(2)  Natural children, stepchildren, adopted children, and children under legal guardianship or comparable permanent custody arrangement of a Foreign Service employee who are living with the member at post are authorized visitation travel to visit the other parent or guardian if that parent or guardian regularly resides in another country where the child does not regularly attend school under section 3 FAM 3752 and section 901(15)(B) of the Foreign Service Act of 1980 (22 U.S.C. 4081(15)(B));

(3)  Stepchildren are eligible for visitation travel only if the spouse or domestic partner (as defined in 3 FAM 1610) parent (whether adoptive or natural) is residing at post with the Foreign Service member;

(4)  Children under the legal guardianship of an employee or spouse, or domestic partner (as defined in 3 FAM 1610), or comparable permanent custody arrangement, are eligible for visitation travel from the member’s post of assignment abroad to visit a natural parent only when a court has ordered visitation rights;

(5)  Natural children, stepchildren, adopted children, and children under legal guardianship or comparable permanent custody arrangement of a Foreign Service member are authorized visitation travel during the member's assignment (including long-term TDY) to an unaccompanied post regardless of whether they regularly reside with the employee under other circumstances, as authorized by 3 FAM 3752 and section 901(8) of the Foreign Service Act (22 U.S.C. 4081(8)).  Travel may be authorized under this subparagraph regardless of whether the member is receiving an education allowance or educational travel allowance for the child.  Visitation by eligible children will be made to an alternate destination abroad as outlined in 3 FAM 3753; and

(6)  Foreign Service members and non-member parents of children of Foreign Service members are eligible to travel abroad to visit natural children, step-children, adopted children, and children under legal guardianship or comparable custody arrangement, as authorized under 3 FAM 3751 and section 901(15)(C) of the Foreign Service Act of 1980 (22 U.S.C. 4081(15)(C)).  This visitation is only permitted if the child or children do not regularly reside with the traveling parent and that parent is not receiving an education allowance or educational travel allowance for the child or children.  This travel is not permitted if the child resides in the same country that the member is assigned to, or the child regularly attends school in the country in which the traveling parent resides.  Eligible Family Members who are not Foreign Service members or non-member parents of children of Foreign Service members are not authorized for travel under this subchapter as parents under 3 FAM 3751 and 22 U.S.C. 4081(15)(C).

3 FAM 3753.2  Tandem Couples and/or Divorced Members

(CT:PER-1093;   05-18-2022)
(Uniform State/USAID/USAGM/Commerce/Foreign Service Corps - USDA)
(Applies to Foreign Service Only)

a. If both parents of an eligible child are members of the Foreign Service with one posted in the United States and one posted abroad, the member assigned abroad initiates a request for the children's travel as specified in 3 FAH-1 H-3750.

b. When both parents are posted abroad, either member (not both) may request issuance of travel orders, but children are limited to one round trip per year.

c.  When the parent/employees are from different agencies, either agency may issue the children's travel orders.  Normally, the agency issuing the orders will bear the full cost of travel.

d. There may be situations where it would be appropriate for the two posts to negotiate a sharing of the costs or for the posts to alternate responsibility for payment of the children's travel cost from 1 year to the next.

e. Only one parent/employee of the eligible child/children may be authorized to travel round trip per year to visit their child/children abroad under this subchapter.

3 FAM 3753.3  Separate Maintenance Allowance

(CT:PER-1093;   05-18-2022)
(Uniform State/USAID/USAGM/Commerce/Foreign Service Corps - USDA)
(Applies to Foreign Service Only)

a. The authorization for travel described in this subchapter does not apply to dependents of employees who receive a voluntary separate maintenance allowance, or to dependents who are otherwise ineligible for visitation travel.  Dependent/children of employees who receive involuntary separate maintenance allowance and are otherwise eligible under 3 FAM 3752 are eligible for travel.

b. Parents of children who receive involuntary separate maintenance and are otherwise eligible under 3 FAM 3752 are eligible for travel.

3 FAM 3753.4  Travel to Meet Member Outside Post of Assignment

(CT:PER-1093;   05-18-2022)
(Uniform State/USAID/USAGM/Commerce/Foreign Service Corps - USDA)
(Applies to Foreign Service Only)

a. Where travel is authorized pursuant to 3 FAM 3753.1, travel may be authorized only to the post of assignment unless the post is unaccompanied, partially unaccompanied, or is under authorized or ordered evacuation orders.  In such a case, the child may travel to meet the parent at an alternate destination abroad with the cost not to exceed the cost of round-trip travel between the residence of the other parent and the employee’s post of assignment, or between the residence of the child if the child does not reside with the other parent and the employee’s post of assignment, or between the residence of the child if the child does not reside with the other parent and the employee’s post of assignment.

b. Evacuation of a post does not automatically entitle an employee to ”travel of children of separated families.”  The employee must have been otherwise eligible for that benefit prior to the evacuation.

c.  The employee/parent may travel to visit their child/children at an alternate destination abroad with cost not to exceed one round trip travel between the residence of the other parent and the employee's post of assignment, or between the residence of the child if the child does not reside with the other parent and the employee's post of assignment.

d. Regardless of whether eligible children reside at the same or different locations, only one parent's travel to one location per calendar year will be authorized under this subchapter.

e. The travel must be at the lowest cost and on the most direct and usually traveled route and must conform to the spacing of trips and scheduling requirements in 3 FAH-1 H-3751 and 3 FAH-1 H-3755 (see 3 FAH-1 H-3750).

3 FAM 3754  REPAYMENT OF TRAVEL

(CT:PER-1093;   05-18-2022)
(Uniform State/USAID/USAGM/Commerce/Foreign Service Corps - USDA)
(Applies to Foreign Service Only)

The member shall repay the travel and transportation expenses of a child's trip or that of parent/employee if it is determined subsequently that the child or parent was ineligible to travel under the provisions of 3 FAM 3753.  However, the employee is not required to refund the cost of the travel if after visitation travel has taken place, a member is unable to complete the required 12-month qualifying period of service abroad because the employing agency:

(1)  Transfers the employee to the United States at the option and benefit of the agency;

(2)  Transfers the employee to the United States for compassionate reasons; or

(3)  Separates the employee involuntarily.

3 FAM 3755  PROCEDURES AND GUIDELINES

(CT:PER-923;   09-20-2018)
(Uniform State/USAID/USAGM/Commerce/Foreign Service Corps - USDA)
(Applies to Foreign Service Only)

Procedures and guidelines which must be followed when implementing this subchapter are published in 3 FAH-1 H-3750.

3 FAM 3756  THROUGH 3759 UNASSIGNED

UNCLASSIFIED (U)