It goes without saying that the Human Rights Act, now in its twentieth year, has been fundamental in the way we live and breathe today.

The Act, brought about so that individuals could approach the domestic Courts for British protection, rather than going through the motions in a lengthy process to the European Court of human Rights,  covers the right to life, a right to a fair trial, and the right to respect a private and family life – three matters which are all too important in the world of Children Law.

The Human Rights Act has protected, and secured, a way of life for millions in its twenty years. There is an interesting report whereby a mother, fleeing domestic violence with her children, moved around the Country to protect herself and her family, due to her abusive partner tracking her location. On arriving in one UK city, she was investigated by the local authority due to the perception that she was intentionally making her family homeless, and moving the children without justification.  With support, the mother was able to challenge the local authority for violating her rights under the Human Rights Act, at which point, the local authority stepped down and the children remained in the care of their mother. Without the Human Rights Act in place, the children could have been temporarily removed from their mother, which could have been detrimental to their wellbeing.

It was announced last week, that the Government, led by Sir Peter Gross, Retired Court of Appeal Judge, will conduct an independent review of this act, with a report to follow in Summer 2021. We are assured that the Government has no ‘preconceived ideas’ and that, according to the Lord Chancellor, it is time to “take a fresh look at the Human Rights Act, see how its provisions are operating and consider whether the framework could be improved” with the review looking at the structural framework of the Act, rather than the rights themselves.

This announcement has been met with backlash, from both Labour MPs and Amnesty UK, with the Law Society President responding that the core values of the Act would be “front and centre for the panel” to ensure no compromise is made.

We will have to wait and see what Summer 2021 brings.

For legal help and representation for all children law matters contact the Ringrose Law Children team. Call 01522 561020 or email


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