Legal Status of the Child: Problems of Implementation

Brigita Kairienė


One of the essential changes that determined the change of the legal status of a child and the attitude of our society towards the start of the change of a child’s status, is Lithuania joining the UN Convention of the Rights of the Child of 1989. The Convention not only recognizes the child as an independent subject of rights, the rights of which are defined separately from the family, but also the possibility for him/her to take part in implementing and protecting his/her own rights.
The child’s legal status is related to two categories: the rights and the interests of the child. The essential principle of the UN Convention of the Rights of the Child in implementing the rights of the child is the assurance of the best interests of the child. The requirement for the primary consideration of the fact what is best for the child means that, when taking any actions, one must consider the interests of the child. The area of implementation of this principle is very wide and it provides for the obligation to examine the interests of the child and to consider them.
The change of the status of the child from passive to active simultaneously caused the problems of the practical implementation of the rights and interests of the child in establishing the contents of the interests of the child, finding out the divide among the needs and interests of the child, harmonizing the interests of separate persons—the parents and the child, several children, the child and the family, providing assistance to the parents in implementing the rights and obligations, etc.


legal status of the child; rights of the child; interests of the child; child participation

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"Societal studies" ISSN online 2029-2244 / ISSN print 2029-2236