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Publication date: 07 May 2020

Practical guidance for protecting unaccompanied children in the relocation process - Infographic (113.13 KB)

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  • Protocols and standard operating procedures laying down steps, responsibilities and safeguards in a transparent and clear manner
  • One coordinating body
  • Child protection authorities involved to ensure better integration of child protection expertise

Age assessment

  • Age assessment only in cases of doubt, and with adequate safeguards
  • Apply the benefit of the doubt
  • Use EASO practical guidance on age assessment, and the gradual implementation of methods starting with non-medical methods

Idenitfication and selection of children

  • Common and non-discriminatory eligibility criteria applied by all Member States
  • Avoid too stringent eligibility criteria
  • Prioritisation of especially vulnerable children
  • Involvement of NGOs and international actors in reaching out

Guardian and legal support

  • Immediate appointment and involvement of the guardian throughout the procedure
  • Guardian trained on relocation and on Dublin procedures
  • Coordination of the guardian with other actors involved
  • Free legal information, assistance and representation to the child and to the guardian


  • Timely, effective and regular information at each step of the procedure
  • Information easy to understand for children, written and oral
  • Support of help lines and cultural mediators or other communication channels

Best interests determination

  • Accelerate family reunion in Dublin cases
  • Child’s views are considered during the whole process
  • Repetitive questioning to the child is avoided
  • Child and guardian consent to the relocation

Security checks

  • Prioritisation of checks based on existing biometric data against European and national databases
  • Guardian accompanies the child in case interview is strictly necessary
  • Interview done by trained staff and with child appropriate methods
  • Explicit justification in case of rejection for security concerns

Pre-departure preparation and transfer

  • Child-friendly pre-departure information sessions
  • Early coordination of both Member States to transfer the child’s care responsibilities
  • Establish as soon as possible contact between the child and the future child guardian or carer
  • Travel escort is the same person that was in contact with the child before the transfer
  • Timely, safe and data protection compliant transfer of files

Services after transfer

  • Information about the child to child protection authorities in the Member State of relocation
  • Information to the child about procedures and next
  • Transition plan for the child reaching majority