Self-Incrimination Defence Fails in Child Support


The expression ‘pleading the fifth amendment’ (which comes from the amendments to the US constitution, the first ten amendments of which are the 'Bill of Rights') has passed into common use in the UK and provides that a person cannot be forced to give evidence if that might tend to incriminate themself.  The same rule applies in the UK in criminal proceedings.
Recently, there was an attempt to argue that a man could not be forced to give information to the Child Support Agency on the ground of self-incrimination.
The court would have none of it: the law and public interest require a full disclosure to be made in such cases.
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