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Mothers Unite UK

Domestic and child abuse in Family Court

Mothers Unite UK is a support and campaign group of mothers who are going through Family Court with abuse from the father involved and are trying to protect their children, or have been through the process and are dealing with the aftermath. If you would like to help us continue our work please consider donating.

If you are struggling to protect your children and feel you are not being heard in court, you are not alone. Our research (see Report to the right) and experience shows there many mothers who are unable to access justice in family court, and we hear harrowing stories of their children not being heard or properly represented. Based on government statistics the numbers of such mothers and children are in the thousands. 70% of cases in family court involve domestic abuse. Only 1% of those cases are denied contact. There is an insitutional culture among court professionals for disbelieving mothers and children when they talk about concerns and fears of abuse. There is a shocking silencing of mothers and children by courts which is unacceptable in a civilised society.

We are concerned about the epidemic of unsafe contact or change of residence ordered by family courts; the countless stories we hear from mothers going through this process are disturbing, harrowing and chilling. We aim to raise awareness of the issues that many mothers are facing but are powerless to do anything about due to the restrictions of the family court system, gagging orders and silencing and/or their lack of legal help. We are making suggestions towards urgent changes and solutions. The new directions PD12J are welcome but more is needed including a complete culture change in the family court system.

You can join our Facebook group for support and browse this website for information and sources of advise.

You can find our Petition on Cafcass failing to protect children here

Our Report is here

Some of Our Stories here

Are you being accused of alienating your child from the father, being hostile, coaching, influencing etc or courts may be openly making allegations of Parental Alienation Syndrome or Implacable Hostility? Despite being found not admissible these tactics are still being used to trap mothers, and their children. More information is on our page about PAS

Mothers matter more
Dina Rabinovitch on Lord Justice Mathew Thorpe
At last, a judge in a child custody battle has dared to acknowledge the simple truth
'But in all this talk of fathers' rights and mothers' rights, what really has been ignored is the children's wishes and the children's welfare - which is what the courts are supposed to protect. It is indisputable that the bond between a child and its mother is different from that between a father and a child. The mother carries the child, is delivered of the child and feeds the child. The relationship is unique and incapable of substitution. We tamper with it at our peril, and at the greater peril of our children.'


Family Procedure Rules (forms for court)


Child Arrangement and Contact Orders: Domestic Violence and Harm

Law - Re L Domestic Violence

COMMENTARY on RE L (Note p 6 No 4 on 'PAS' and 'implacably hostile' found not admissible)

In Parliament MPs debate domestic abuse victims in family law courts
On Thursday 15 September MPs took part in a House of Commons Chamber debate on domestic abuse victims in family law courts. This debate was scheduled by the Backbench Business Committee following a representation from Angela Smith, Maria Miller and Peter Kyle.
Test of the Motion debated

That this House notes the Women's Aid report entitled Nineteen Child Homicides, published in January 2016; and calls on the Government to review the treatment and experiences of victims of domestic abuse in family law courts.

Violent Parents - Calling for the End to Child Contact at Any Cost

Jess Philips Labour MP for Birmingham Yardley


Child First

Key issues raised by research on child contact and domestic violence
Dr Ravi Thiara and Dr Christine Harrison

Adjudicating Domestic Violence Custody Cases: What Judges Must Know

Widely Anticipated Article Confirms Court Mistreatment of Protective Mothers

How Family Courts Handle Domestic Abuse Allegations

Misconceptions About the Family Courts

Gillian Macdonald University of Bath
Hearing children’s voices? Including children’s perspectives on their experiences of domestic violence in welfare reports prepared for the English courts in private family law proceedings.

Domestic violence and private family court proceedings:Promoting child welfare or promoting contact?

Rights of Women Family Law info

Coercive control

Using the Children

'Name and shame'
Judges, experts, cafcass, social workers