Parkinson, P., & Cashmore, J. (2012). The importance of confidentiality: Research and promises of confidentiality to children: A legal commentary. Ethics 1: Good Research Practice: A brief history of ethics and its implications. On-line: Epigeum Ltd.

Extract from Introduction: The following commentary deals with a legal challenge by Patrick Parkinson, Professor of Law, and Judy Cashmore, Research Psychologist, University of Sydney, in 2002. A decision of the Family Court of Australia indicated that research conducted with children under express promises of confidentiality may be protected from subpoena (a court order to produce the data). The case (T v. L, unreported, 12.10.2001, Collier J, Parramatta) arose from research we conducted on children’s participation in making decisions about residence and contact following their parents’ separation. Parents and children were interviewed only after proceedings were thought to be completed. They were all given express, explicit undertakings of confidentiality, orally and in papers mailed to families by the Family Court of Australia inviting them to contact us.

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