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The (im)possible parents in law

Jones, Caroline (2011) The (im)possible parents in law In, Lind, Craig, Keating, Heather and Bridgeman, Jo (eds.) Taking Responsibility: Law and the Changing Family. Aldershot, GB, Ashgate pp. 201-220. (Family Law).

Record type: Book Section


Contributing authors were asked to consider three interrelated questions regarding family and responsibility in light of changing family arrangements: ‘When do these relationships become ‘familial’? When is family responsibility acquired? When does that responsibility become legal responsibility?’ In this chapter I address these questions by focusing on the ascription of legal parent status in light of recent changes brought about under the auspices of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 2008 (HFEA 2008).

The first two questions will be addressed briefly at the outset. The main focus of the chapter lies with the deliberation of the final question; by examining the provisions of the HFEA 2008 I outline the now possible – and crucially, the remaining impossible – legal parents in current Anglo-Welsh law (with the attendant allocated legal responsibilities or denial thereof).

This analysis traces the (in)consistency and limitations of legal imagination regarding potential parents and responsibility, illustrating that the once unimaginable has (in many instances, but not all) now become possible, and questions what this might mean in the future.

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Published date: 10 January 2011
Keywords: legal parent, responsibility, parental responsibility, parenthood, human fertilisation and embryology act 2008, legal imagination, HFEA 2008, assisted reproductive technologies, ARTs, mother, father, genetic, surrogacy, adoption, birth certificate, birth, intention, civil partnership, same-sex, inequality, marriage, co-mother, egg donor, kinship, single person


Local EPrints ID: 160533
ISBN: 9781409402022
PURE UUID: 2053fd39-b0a4-4804-bcab-84508b793cf5

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Date deposited: 15 Jul 2010 14:47
Last modified: 18 Jul 2017 12:35

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Author: Caroline Jones
Editor: Craig Lind
Editor: Heather Keating
Editor: Jo Bridgeman

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