Parental responsibility
  1. Is it possible to talk about parental duties and responsibilities without also talking about parental rights?
  2. Do you consider the lack of a statutory definition of parental responsibility problematic? How might a statutory definition be used?
  3. Are the Law Commission’s original reasons for withholding automatic parental responsibility from unmarried fathers any longer convincing? How would you reform the current law to achieve equality between all parents?
  4. Do you agree with Harris and George that there is a connection between the courts’ approach to parental responsibility orders and their approach to orders about children’s living arrangements? Is such a link appropriate?
  5. Should there be a duty to consult and agree on all matters falling within the scope of parental responsibility? Is the courts’ current approach defensible?
  6. Would you have reached the same decision as Hedley J in Re Wyatt (A Child) (Medical Treatment: Parents’ Consent)? What factors would you have found particularly persuasive in reaching your decision?