News | Legal News

26 March 2018

Parental alienation must be avoided

The Office of National Statistics (ONS) has today released findings on how children in the UK aged between 10 to 15 years are coping in a range of areas that contribute to their quality of life.

Two of its key discoveries are that:

  • “The proportion of children aged 10 to 15 years who talked to their father more than once a week about things that mattered to them increased significantly from 38.0% in 2009 to 2010 to 45.2% in 2015 to 2016,” and;
  • “The growth in children talking to their fathers more was driven largely by girls, who reported an increase from 35.7% in 2009 to 2010 to 45.6% in 2015 to 2016.”

These findings confirm CAFCASS (Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service) warnings from last year that parental alienation – when one parent actively attempts to distance their child from the other parent - can cause adverse childhood experiences.

Fran Hipperson, partner in the family law practice says:

“These ONS results are a warning to families that parental alienation must be avoided if there are no legitimate concerns about the other parent. It can be extremely damaging not only at the time it starts to occur, but as the child continues into adulthood.

“This is a highly complex issue and if a parent considers that their relationship with their child is deteriorating or their child starts to want to spend an increasingly reduced amount of time with them, then advice should be sought from a specialist family lawyer. The earlier this issue is detected and addressed the better.”

If you are affected by this matter, please get in touch with Fran on 01753 889995 or email

Fran Hipperson

Fran Hipperson

Tel: 01753 279070 | 07808 642686

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