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Children and young people feedback line: 0808 175 3333

Freedom of Information

Freedom of Information

Under the Freedom of Information Act 2000, you have a general right of access to all types of recorded information held by public authorities, unless particular exemptions apply. The Act aims to improve the openness and transparency of public authorities, and we are committed to complying with this legislation.

Requesting new Information

If information you would like to see is not already published on our website or elsewhere, you can make a Freedom of Information (FOI) request. Please see below for details, or see our Freedom of Information factsheet.

Under the Freedom of Information Act 2000, anyone can make a request for information to us (unless the information falls under one of the specific exemptions in the Act). You have the right to:

  • (a) be informed whether Cafcass holds the information specified in your request (unless an exemption applies); and
  • (b) if that is the case, to have that information communicated to you within 20 working days.

A request can be made using the details below, giving your name, email address, the information you would like to access and the method of access (hardcopy or email) via:

Information requested is usually free of charge (i.e. there is no charge by us, although the user would of course have to meet any charges by their internet service provider, personal printing costs, etc). In some cases, if a large volume of information is requested in hard copy, we may issue a fees notice for disbursement costs (printing and postage). We reserve the right not to process applications that cost £450 and more, in keeping with central government provisions. This does not impact on the information listed in the Publication Scheme.

Our policy is to be as open as possible, but we may withhold information if we consider an exemption applies. If we refuse to supply all or part of any information you have asked for, we will write to you giving our reasons for refusal. The reasons will be based on the exempted categories under the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

If you are unhappy with the way in which your request was handled, you can request an internal review. A senior member of staff who was not party to the original decision on whether to release the information will review the manner in which the request was dealt with and will either uphold or overturn the original decision.

The Act also provides for an appeal mechanism whereby you may apply to the Information Commissioner for a decision as to whether we dealt with a specified request in accordance with the Act. This can be done via or Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire SK9 5AF.

For more information, please see our Freedom of Information factsheet and our Freedom of Information policy.

Important additional information to note before making a Freedom of Information request

Please read the following before submitting an FOI request as it contains important information about some of the most common requests that we receive.


Our approach to alienating behaviours

Further information about how we define and assess alienating behaviours by a child’s parent or parents can be found on our alienating behaviours page. 

All our practising staff are trained on how to identify and assess alienating behaviours. This is explained within our Child Impact Assessment Framework training (or CIAF training for short). There is guidance on the CIAF this page of our website.

We also provide access to a psychology service to discuss cases with a qualified psychologist if it is felt necessary by a Family Court Adviser in a case where alienating behaviours are present.