It is against the law for a parent or carer to smack their child, except where this amounts to ‘reasonable punishment’ (section 58 Children Act 2004).
We are consulting on the development of a legislative proposal to remove this defence. This would not create a new criminal offence, but would remove a defence to the existing offence of common assault or battery.
How to respond
Submit your comments by 2 April 2018, in any of the following ways:
Download the response form
Complete and return to:
Removal of Defence of Reasonable Punishment
Consultation Legislation Team
Children and Families Division