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Take the Family › Parent Wins Landmark Holiday Fine Challenge

Parent Wins Landmark Holiday Fine Challenge

Monday 16 May 2016

Term time holidays - court rules in favour of parents

A father from the Isle of Wight has made legal history after the High Court ruled that he has not been guilty of any criminal offence for taking his daughter on a family holiday to Florida during term-time.

Jon Platt won his appeal against a fine in October 2015 but his local authority appealed the decision in the High Court. The High Court judges have dismissed the council's challenge, raising campaigners’ hopes that the way the law is applied in future will change.

The ruling may also mean that thousands of parents can claim refunds for fines for taking children out of school for family holidays. 

However, the Department for Education has stated that it will now change the law so that every unauthorised absence is illegal. Such changes will take several years to implement.

In the meantime, a father from Brighton who has twice been fined for taking his kids on holiday in term-time is now taking his fight to the European courts on the basis that the law contravenes his human rights. His case is backed by former Lib Dem MP John Hemming, founder of The Parents' Union campaigning for the abolition of the term-time holiday ban.

Read our tips section for advice on family budgets and other aspects of travel with kids.

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