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Parenthood report tackles complex issues

20 April 2005

Parenthood report tackles complex issues

A Law Commission report tackles complex questions about laws on parenthood.


A Law Commission report tackles complex questions about laws on parenthood, the Minister responsible for the Law Commission, Marian Hobbs, said today after the tabling of the report in Parliament.

The report, New Issues in Legal Parenthood, is a comprehensive review of the laws on parenthood.

"It is important that these laws are reviewed periodically to ensure they keep pace with technology and social change," the minister added.

Some of the issues dealt with in the report originated from policy work on the Care of Children Act 2004 and Human Assisted Reproductive Technology Act 2004.

Those acts raised the profile of the importance of children having clear rules about who are their parents and who has legal responsibility for them.

"The report grapples with some difficult issues," Marian Hobbs said. "For example, should the Courts have the power to force a child or adult to provide a bodily sample for the purpose of parentage testing using DNA profiling? Should children have more than two legal parents? These are complex questions and will require a considered response from the government."

Because recommendations in the report propose amendments to various acts, several ministries will be directly involved in preparing the government response to the Law Commission's report. That response is required to be presented to Parliament in October 2005.


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