Family test: assessing the impact of policies on families

Guidance on how government policy makers should apply the ‘family test’.


The Family Test


Strong and stable families and family relationships, in all their forms, play an important role in our society. Whether intended or not, a wide range of government activity has a direct or indirect impact on families. Families in turn shape how individuals engage with policy initiatives and use public services.

On 18 August 2014 the Prime Minister announced the introduction of a ‘family test’.

The objective of the test is to introduce a family perspective to the policy making process. It will ensure that policy makers recognise and make explicit the potential impacts on family relationships in the process of developing and agreeing new policy.

This guidance sets out when and how government departments should apply the test.

Published 31 October 2014