What are the legal rights and duties of parents?

Parents who exercise responsibility must raise and care for the child. This means that you must provide the child with food, care and somewhere to live. You are also the child’s legal representative. And you are liable for the child’s maintenance until they reach the age of 21.

Parents according to the law

A child’s legal parents are the mother and father as defined below.

The mother is:

  • the woman who gave birth to the child. This also applies if the child was conceived using a donor egg;
  • the woman who adopted the child;
  • the co-mother (duomoeder) who has automatically become the child's parent, or has acknowledged the child, or has been declared the child’s parent by a court.

The father is:

  • the mother’s husband or registered partner at the time of the child’s birth, unless his paternity of the child is denied;
  • the man who has acknowledged or adopted the child;
  • the man who has been declared the child’s father by a court.