Q&As

A father, who has parental responsibility for the child, is subject to a non-molestation order and is concerned that further untrue allegations may be made against him and has started recording hand overs of the child at contact sessions to protect himself. The mother does not consent to either her or the child being filmed and has reported the father to the police. Is the father able to record handovers in this way?

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Produced in partnership with Katherine Illsley of 4 King’s Bench Walk
Published on LexisPSL on 21/05/2019

The following Family Q&A Produced in partnership with Katherine Illsley of 4 King’s Bench Walk provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • A father, who has parental responsibility for the child, is subject to a non-molestation order and is concerned that further untrue allegations may be made against him and has started recording hand overs of the child at contact sessions to protect himself. The mother does not consent to either her or the child being filmed and has reported the father to the police. Is the father able to record handovers in this way?

The first step for the father is carefully to consider the wording of the non-molestation order against him. A non-molestation order is granted under section 42 of the Family Law Act 1996 (FLA 1996) and will contain provisions prohibiting a person from molesting another person. Often a non-molestation order will prohibit the respondent from threatening and harassing the applicant. The order may also contain more specific provisions which would be relevant to the father’s conduct at handover. For further guidance, see Practice Note: Non-molestation orders.

The mother may argue that the conduct of the father in recording her at handovers, when she has clearly objected, is a form of molestation. The term ‘molestation’ is

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