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Parental authority for unmarried parents

Since 1 July 2014, joint custody applies.

Parental authority - revision of the Swiss Civil

If the parents of the child are not married to each other, they must make a joint written declaration in order to establish joint parental authority. The parents must declare that they:

  • agree to share responsibility for the child and
  • have agreed on residence for the child, on personal relations or each parent’s share of childcare duties and on child maintenance contributions.

The declaration can be made at the civil register office at the time of recognition of the child, or at a later date at the Child Protection Authority.

Until such a declaration is made, parental authority is awarded solely to the mother.

If one of the parents refuses to make a declaration on joint parental authority, the other parent may contact the child protection authority at the child’s place of residence.

Parental authority - revision of the Swiss Civil Code and the OASI Ordinance