Unfortunately, parental separation can sometimes result in the breakdown of the relationship between a child and one of their parents.
And in a recent sad case a father took the breakdown of his relationship with his daughter to the logical conclusion, by applying to the court to terminate his parental responsibility for the child.
But whilst the judge granted the application, he did warn the father of the possible consequences of doing so.
The circumstances behind the father’s application were as follows. The child was born in 2012. We are not told when the parents separated, but we are told that the child was made subject to a care order in 2015.
At some point the father’s contact with the child stopped. The father did recently apply to the court for contact with the child, but the application went nowhere, in particular because the child indicated that she did not wish to see her father at the moment.
The father then applied to terminate his parental responsibility, essentially to reflect that he has no present relationship with his daughter.
The judge hearing the application discussed with the father how the application would look from his daughter’s point of view, including the position after she reaches the age of 18, for example, and how the granting of the application may affect her thoughts as far as the father was concerned in the future.
Despite these matters, the father advised the judge that he wished to proceed with the application.
As with any application relating to a child the judge had to consider what was best for her welfare.
He concluded that it could not be in accordance with the welfare of a child for a father to hold parental responsibility if he does not wish to, and intends not to exercise any future responsibility or part in her life.
Accordingly, he was satisfied that the child’s welfare was met by terminating the father’s parental responsibility, and he made an order to that effect.
Whilst one can have great sympathy for a parent whose child tells them they don’t want to see them, terminating parental responsibility is obviously a very serious step, that shouldn’t be taken lightly.
Any parent in such a position should clearly seek expert legal advice as to their options, before taking any action. We can find you an expert that works with you on our digital platform. For more information, call us on 020 3904 0506, or click here, and fill in the form.
You can read the full judgment in the case here.
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