Spotlight
Family Court Practice, The
Order the 2021 edition due out in May
Court of Protection Practice 2021
'Court of Protection Practice goes from strength to strength, having...
Jackson's Matrimonial Finance Tenth Edition
Jackson's Matrimonial Finance is an authoritative specialist text...
Spotlight
Latest articles
Disabled women more than twice as likely to experience domestic abuse
The latest data from the Office of National Statistics shows that, in the year ending March 2020, around 1 in 7 (14.3%) disabled people aged 16 to 59 years experienced any form of domestic abuse in...
The President of the Family Division endorses Public Law Working Group report
The Courts and Tribunals Judiciary has published a message from the President of the Family Division, Sir Andrew McFarlane, in which the President endorses the publication of the President’s...
HMCTS updates online divorce services guidance
HM Courts and Tribunals Service have recently updated the online divorce services guidance with the addition of guides for deemed and dispensed service applications, alternative service...
Become the new General Editor of The Family Court Practice, the definitive word on family law and procedure
The Family Court Practice (‘The Red Book’) is widely acknowledged as the leading court reference work for all family practitioners and the judiciary. We are currently recruiting a...
The suspension, during lockdown, of prison visits for children: was it lawful?
Jake Richards, 9 Gough ChambersThis article argues that the suspension on prison visits during this period and the deficiency of measures to mitigate the impact of this on family life and to protect...
View all articles
Authors

CHILD PROTECTION/HUMAN RIGHTS: Juppala v Finland (No 18620/03)

Sep 29, 2018, 17:12 PM
Slug : juppala-v-finland-no-18620-03
Meta Title :
Meta Keywords :
Canonical URL :
Trending Article : No
Prioritise In Trending Articles : No
Date : Dec 10, 2008, 05:32 AM
Article ID : 87441

(European Court of Human Rights; 2 December 2008)

Following a contact visit with the father, the grandmother discovered a bruise on the back of the 3 year-old child. The grandmother asked the child what had caused the bruise, and he replied that the father had punched him. The grandmother took the child to the doctor and reported the child's account to the doctor, who noted that the bruise was consistent with a punch. The doctor then reported an alleged assault to the child welfare authorities, notwithstanding the grandmother's objection to the making of a formal report. The father then complained to the police. The grandmother was charged, and eventually convicted, of defamation 'without better knowledge'; she was required to pay compensation, but not sentenced to a prison term. The grandmother complained that her conviction was a breach of her right to freedom of expression under European Convention on Human Rights, Art 10.

The question raised by the application was how to strike a proper balance when a parent was wrongly suspected of having abused his or her child, while protecting children at risk of significant harm. The starting point in this case was to note that the grandmother had acted properly in considering whether the bruise had been deliberately inflicted. When she consulted a doctor the doctor rightly decided to communicate to the child welfare authorities the suspicion that he personally had formed having examined and interviewed the boy. The seriousness of child abuse as a problem required that persons acting in good faith in what they believed were the best interests of the child should not be influenced by fear of being prosecuted or sued when deciding whether or when their doubts should be communicated to health care professionals or social services. The duty to the child in making these decisions should not be clouded by a risk of exposure to claims by a distressed parent if the suspicion of abuse proved unfounded. Any individual should be able to voice a suspicion of child abuse, formed in good faith, in the context of an appropriate reporting procedure, without the potential 'chilling effect' of a criminal conviction or an obligation to pay compensation. It had not been argued that the grandmother had acted recklessly, that is without caring whether the boy's allegation was well founded or not. There had been a violation of Art 10.

Categories :
  • Archive
  • Judgments
Tags :
Authors
Provider :
Product Bucket :
Recommend These Products
Related Articles
Load more comments
Comment by from