Is this actually legal?

As part of the drive to encourage people to live up to their responsibilities, mothers will be made to name the father when registering a birth unless they can prove that it would be "impossible, impractical or unreasonable" to do so – for example, if they had been the victim of domestic violence.

Once established as the father, using DNA tests if necessary, men who fail to pay child maintenance will receive tough sanctions, including being stripped of their passports.

OK, the bit about "forcing" mothers to give the father\’s name. I\’m sure there will be a rise in claims of not actually knowing.

However, this stripping of passports. Is that actually legal?

We used to get very hot under the collar about the Soviets deciding who could and could not leave the country. I have some vague idea that under one or another international treaty we\’ve agreed not to actually do that….except in cases where there is bail, or a court order not to leave.

So, any international lawyers out there? I\’m sorta assuming that there is a "right" to be able to leave the country. And that non-payment of maintenance (as opposed to, say, waiting for a trial) isn\’t a good enough reason to breach this right. Anyone know?

11 comments on “Is this actually legal?

  1. However, this stripping of passports. Is that actually legal?

    Tim, this reminds me of a Times article from December 2007, where ‘senior legal figures’ told Brown there had to be due process in this context. Of course we all know what he and Labour think of due process: it’s something to be ignored until a member of the public contests it in court.

  2. Wait til ID cards come. Then the ID card will be confiscated because it gives travel rights within the EU. They’ve already done this for football banning orders.

  3. Rights? I don’t think we really have any. Our freedoms hinge on the whim of the political classes. There are no guarantees of any rights and very little enshrined in law to back it up. I guess they can strip us of whatever they want, including our wealth and property. We are but serfs!

  4. Nah: this is just a ploy to get the DNA of all newborn children right at the outset.

    Just wait until DNA is encoded in the birth certificate as the ultimate “proof of citizenship” or somesuch.

    😉

  5. Another example of Socialists screwing things up so they can “fix it” to their own dastardly advantage.

    What if we were not forced to subsidise these births? then the need to force fathers would not be of interest to the state, but it would be the duty of the woman in question to only yield to a man of good character that they judged for themselves to be someone who would support her.

    Far to trad, of course.

  6. I’m not sure about the legal situation but I was thinking about the equity issues.
    Situation 1 – one night stand results in conception. Bloke wants to keep the kid, is happy to pay for it etc etc. Women doesn’t want to be ‘burdened’ and wants an abortion. Result – women has full and final say; bloke’s views have zero weight.
    Situation 2 – bloke doesn’t want to know about the kid but the women for whatever reason wants to keep it. Result – the bloke is now a virtual slave to the state, the women and the kid for the next 18 years, the fruits of his labours garnished to pay for a decision that he opposed.

    OK, so he should have thought about this when he decided to not wear a condom, but the fairness of it all seems rather slanted against the so-called dominant sex.

  7. Actually the proposal probably contravenes the Geneva Convention.

    Being forced to stay in Britain for 18 years with no hope for parole = cruel and unusual punishment.

  8. “cruel and unusual punishment”

    Cruel, yes. Unusual, no (current situation is normal for Labour governments).

  9. “What if we were not forced to subsidise these births?”

    Good point. We shouldn’t be. Any woman bringing a fatherless child into the world should be obliged to place the child for adoption by responsible couples who aren’t flaky.

    The right of the baby to a normal stable family should be paramount.

    But the other thing is we need to stop babies being used as a key to a life of reilly on state benefits.

  10. It’ll never happen, people.

    It is not intended to happen.

    It is part of El Gordo’s pre-election bid for the Daily Mail vote.

    Time for the scales to fall from everyone’s eyes.

    He is plotting a snap election: surely you can all see it?

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