The amendment and introduction of Jade’s Law into the Victims and Prisoners Bill on 3rd October 2023, will automatically removes a person’s parental responsibility if sentenced for killing their partner.

This new law will be applicable to anyone who has been convicted of the murder or voluntary manslaughter of a person they share parental responsibility with. Each case will be assessed to ensure the best interest of the children, and the parent may have the right in the future to apply to have their parental responsibility reinstated.

Parental responsibility allows parents to have the right to make decisions about their children’s lives, such as their school and agreeing to medical treatment. A mother will automatically have parental responsibility from the birth of the child. However, a father will have parental responsibility if they are married to the child’s mother or on the child’s birth certificate, although there are other ways for this to be obtained. If a person does not automatically have parental responsibility, then an application can be made to the court.

Jade’s Law will prevent the parent from being able to make these decisions. Its aim is to help protect children from the parent who has committed murder from having any control of their life. It also aims to prevent the victim’s family having to go through a further court process to try and restrict this parental responsibility.

The Ministry of Justice has stated “this will ensure children are protected from their remaining parent having any say in their life, from going on holiday abroad to which school they will attend.”

This is being considered following a campaign led by the family of Jade Ward, who was murdered by her former partner in 2021. Jade Ward was stabbed and strangled in her home. Despite her former partner having been sentenced to 25 years in prison, he continued to exercise controlling behaviour over the family through his parental responsibility, by requesting school reports and applying for contact orders. An online petition received over 130,000 signatures for the law to change.


Ringrose Law can provide advice on parental responsibility and child arrangements. We offer a 24/7 domestic abuse support contact helpline for those requiring instant support; please call 07739 748 675 or email

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