Question 2: Explain the relationship between parental rights and responsibilities under the Children (Scotland) Act 1995 In context to the question, having ‘right’ is classified as an entitlement by law of a parent. Similarly, having ‘responsibility’ is an obligation of a parent to fulfil a series of duties. Parental rights and responsibilities are vitally important in the relationship between parents and children. In the Children (Scotland) Act 1995, responsibilities are listed before rights. This is structurally sound in that the rights legally assist parents in carrying out their responsibilities. Section 1 of the Children (Scotland) Act 1995 states: It is a responsibility that the parent has:
(a)To safeguard and promote the child’s health, development and welfare; (b)To provide, in a manner appropriate to the stage of development of the child- (i)Direction;
To the child;
(c)If the child is not living with the parent, to maintain personal relations and direct contact with the child on a regular basis; and (d)To act as the child’s legal representative,
But only in so far as compliance with this section is practicable and in the interests of the child. Section 2 subsection 1 of the Children (Scotland) Act 1995 reads: Subject to section 3(1)(b) and (3) of this Act, a parent, in order to enable him to fulfil his parental responsibilities in relation to his child, has the right— (a)To have the child living with him or otherwise to regulate the child’s residence; (b)To control, direct or guide, in a manner appropriate to the stage of development of the child, the child’s upbringing; (c)If the child is not living with him, to maintain personal relations and direct contact with the child on a regular basis; and (d)To act as the child’s legal representative.
It is evident that the list of parental responsibilities and rights are almost a verbatim replication of one another. Less apparent then, is how they should be separated. Section 2 subsection 4 of the Children (Scotland) Act 1995 states: The rights mentioned in paragraphs (a) to (d) of subsection (1) … are in this Act referred to as “parental rights”; and a parent, or any person acting on his behalf, shall have title to sue, or to defend, in any proceedings as respects those rights. In other words, parental rights are designed to lawfully protect the child. A case law example of the relationship between parental...