Parental Responsibility Act – Things You Need To Know -

Parental Responsibility Act – Things You Need To Know

parental responsibility act

Parental responsibility is defined in Children Act 1989 as, all the rights, duties, powers, responsibilities, and authorities which by law a parent of a child has concerning the child and his property.

What Do We Understand By Parental Responsibility?

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After divorce when certain decisions have to be taken by the parents about the child, then people with the parental responsibility for that particular child are allowed to have a say in that decision. Practically, parental responsibility includes determining the child’s education in school, assessing the child’s medical records, consenting to take the child on vacation, appoint a guardian for the child in case of death of a parent.

Who Can Have The Parental Responsibility?

The mother will surely have parental responsibility. Father who is married to the mother or who is in a civil partnership with the mother can have parental responsibility. Stepparents cannot parental responsibility. Grandparents too cannot have parental responsibility.

How Can Father Not Married To Or In A Civil Relationship With The Mother Have Parental Responsibility?

Father not married to or not in a civil partnership with the mother can have parental responsibility by marrying or entering a civil partnership with the mother. He can also possess this responsibility by having his name registered on the birth certificate or by entering the parental responsibility agreement with the mother. He can also simply obtain parental responsibility from the court.

Transfer Of Parental Responsibility

Parental responsibility cannot be transferred to another person but it can be shared. Hence, can’t be completely transferred. Temporary carers cannot have parental responsibility but they can do what is required for the betterment of the child under specific circumstances.

A parental responsibility agreement is an agreement that is made between the mother and father to allow the father to have parental responsibility if they are not married or if they are not in a civil partnership. Both the mother and the father have to arrive at an agreement on this. If any major decision has to be made regarding the child, then all those with parental responsibility will need to agree.


Parental responsibility refers to the potential or actual liability that may be performed or obligated by the parents for the behavior of the child. It gives the person to decide on the children’s upbringing. Practically, parental responsibility means the power to make important decisions related to a child’s future and wellbeing. If parents are unable to agree with their child’s wellbeing, they could even try family mediation. The process of mediation differs for every country. If the mediation also doesn’t work, then either person can apply to the court, which then decides on the parent’s behalf.

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