COVID-19: has the pandemic affected relationships between children and their non-resident parents?

Publication type

Research Paper


Caroline Bryson and Stephen McKay

Publication date

Series Number



The well-being and outcomes of children living in separated families are associated with the quality of their relationship with their non-resident parent, and child maintenance provided by that parent. It is therefore important to understand how COVID-19 has affected these. While the Understanding Society COVID-19 survey suggests a strong degree of stability in many children’s relationships with their non-resident parent, those relationships most at risk (of becoming less close or having less contact) during the pandemic are those which were of poorer quality beforehand. Child maintenance is most likely to have reduced during the pandemic where children had less contact beforehand.


Psychology, Young People, Child Development, Family Formation And Dissolution, Welfare Benefits, Well Being, Health, Finance, Sociology Of Households and Covid 19