Guardianship of a Child

Contact Information

If the parents of the child are married with each other, they are both guardians of the child. If the parents are not married with each other when the child is born, the mother is the sole guardian of the child. Guardianship of a child entails managing the child's affairs and making decisions concerning the child. The guardian is also entitled to get information about matters concerning the child from various officials and looks after the child’s financial matters.

Joint custody

The principle of the legislation about child custody and visiting rights is that the interests of the child are always best fulfilled when both parents are responsible for the maintenance of the child together. Joint custody requires that the parents have adequate ability to make decisions together and discuss the matters concerning the child.

In joint custody both guardians receive information concerning the child and make decisions together about the child’s:

  • name
  • place of residence
  • nationality
  • upbringing
  • religion
  • education and
  • health care.

Single parenthood

When only one of the parents is the guardian of the child, he/she alone can make the decisions concerning the child. Officials provide information about the child only to the guardian, and with a specific permit given by the guardian also to the other parent.