Duhaime's Law Dictionary

Parent Definition:

Father or mother or as otherwise may be defined by statute such as through adoption or same-sex relationships. Also, the controlling corporation of another.

Related Terms: Child, In Loco Parentis, Guardian, Parental Alienation, Putative Father, Family

An individual who, in law, has custody, guardianship or access rights in regards to a child and who may have corollary obligations to financially support a minor, typically by way of child support.

In the common law, a parent was simply the father and mother of a child and for a time, only those children born within wedlock.

However, the term has been substantially taken over in most jurisdictions by a variety of statutes to include individuals who cause a child to be born through a surrogate mother; those who adopt a child, those who have care or control of a child through a foster care arrangement; and those who, though being of a same-sex union, have the care or custody of a child, or some combination of the above.

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