Richard Davies

Richard Davies

Parental Responsibility – Key points discussed by our Cardiff family law solicitors.

Find out from our family law solicitors in Cardiff the law surrounding parental responsibility.  Our family law solicitors look at what parental responsibility is, who has parental responsibility, how to get parental responsibility and what parental responsibility means.

If you would like to speak to one of our specialist family law solicitors today please contact us. Contact First Line Family Law by Telephone or Email

What is Parental Responsibility?

Parental Responsibility is defined under section 3(1) of the Children Act 1989 as being:

“all the rights, duties, powers, responsibilities and authority which by law a parent of a child has in relation to the child and his property”.

Who has Parental Responsibility?

  • A birth mother will automatically have parental responsibility.
  • A father who is married or in a civil partnership with the mother will automatically have parental responsibility.
  • A father who is not married with the mother but is named on the birth certificate.
  • A second female parent who is married to the biological mother at the time of conception and agreed to the conception.
  • A second female parent who is not married to the biological mother but the mother had fertility treatment in a licensed clinic and the mother agreed under the ‘agreed female parenthood conditions’ to the second female parent having parental responsibility for the child.

What does Parental Responsibility mean in reality?

When someone has parental responsibility they have all the legal powers and responsibilities in law to make decisions regarding the upbringing of the child.  Such decisions may include the following:-

  • Choosing the child’s name;
  • Making medical decisions regarding the child;
  • Making decisions on the child’s school and education;
  • Taking the child on holiday;
  • Religious and cultural decisions regarding the child.

How does someone obtain Parental Responsibility?

There are many situations where someone will not have automatic parental responsibility but will want to acquire it.  This may include parents, step-parents or grandparents. 

Anyone can obtain parental responsibility if there is a court order which confers parental responsibility on them.  Such examples would include a Child Arrangements Order, Special Guardianship Order or Adoption Order.

Parental responsibility can also be acquiried by signing a parental responsibility agreement which is recorded at court or by obtaining a parental responsibility order. 

The way in which you will acquire parental responsibility will depend on your specific circumstances.  If you would like advice obtaining parental responsibility contact our team today for specific advice regarding your circumstances.

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