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CHILDRENS/MINORS RIGHTS IN RUSSIA. RIGHTS OF RUSSIAN UNDERAGED CHILDREN
The child's right to live and to be brought up in a family, to communicate with his parents and other relatives, the rights of children to live free from hunger, abuse, neglect, and other inhumane conditions, legal protection for children, benefits under the law, how children are represented by attorneys, how resources are distributed in a family experiencing divorce - the property rights of the child; children in abusive situations, children in foster care.


Important Disclaimer

The below Family Law text on on the rights of underaged children/minors in Russia should be used for information purposes only and appropriate legal advice should be sought as and when appropriate.

For legal advice on the childrens rights in Russia contact Mr Maxim POLYAKOV, your Russian qualified lawyer, member of the Moscow City Bar Association, tel. +7-495-518-72-62, email maxim@arbitratus.ru (English or Russian).

The Family Code of the Russian Federation

Chapter 11. The Rights of Underaged Children

Article 54. The Child's Right to Live and to Be Brought Up in a Family


1. Recognized as a child shall be a person who has not reached the age of 18 years.

2. Every child shall have the right to live and to be brought up in a family insofar as it is possible, the right to know his parents, the right to enjoy their care and the right to live with them, with the exception of cases when this is contrary to his/her interests.

The child shall have the right to be brought up by his parents, and to their providing for his interests, for his all-round development and for the respect of his dignity.

In the case of the absence of the parents, of their being deprived of parenthood and in other cases of the loss of parental care, the right of the child to be brought up in a family shall be ensured by the guardianship and trusteeship body in conformity with the procedure laid down by Chapter 18 of the present Code.

Article 55. The Child's Right to Communicate with His Parents and with Other Relatives

1. The child shall have the right to communicate with both of his parents, with his grandfather and grandmother, his brothers and sisters, and also with other relatives. The dissolution of the parents' marriage, its recognition as annulled or the parents' living apart shall have no impact on the child's rights.

If the parents live apart, the child shall have the right to communicate with each of them. The child shall have the right to communicate with his parents also in the case of their living in different states.

2. A child who has found himself in an emergency situation (who has been detained, arrested, taken into custody, placed into a medical centre, etc.), shall have the right to communicate with his parents and with his other relatives in the law-established procedure.

Article 56. The Child's Right to Protection

1. The child shall have the right to the protection of his rights and legal interests.

The child's rights and legal interests shall be protected by his parents (by the persons substituting them), and in the cases stipulated by the present Code, by the guardianship and trusteeship body, by the Prosecutor and by the court. The underaged person, recognized in conformity with the law as fully capable before his reaching 18, shall have the right to independently exercise his rights and duties, including the right to protection.

2. The child shall have the right to protection from abuses on the part of the parents (the persons, substituting for them). If the child's rights and legal interests are violated, including if the parents (one of them) fail to discharge or improperly discharge their duties involved in the child's upbringing and education, of if they abuse the parental rights, the child shall have the right to turn on his own for their protection to the guardianship and trusteeship body, and upon reaching the age of 14 years - to the court.

3. The official persons of organizations and the other citizens who have learned about the threat to the life or to the health of the child, about the violation of his rights and legal interests, shall be obliged to report this to the guardianship and trusteeship body per the place of the child's actual stay. Upon the receipt of such information, the guardianship and trusteeship body shall be obliged to take the necessary measures to protect the child's rights and legal interests.

Federal Law No. 49-FZ of April 24, 2008 amended Article 57 of this Code. The amendments shall enter into force from September 1, 2008

Article 57. The Child's Right to Express His Opinion

The child shall have the right to express his opinion in resolving any issue in the family, which infringes upon his interests, and also to be heard out in the course of any court or administrative hearings. It shall be obligatory to take into account the opinion of the child who has reached the age of 10 years, except for in the cases when this is contrary to his interests. In the cases stipulated by the present Code (Articles 59, 72, 132, 134, 136, 143 and 154), the guardianship and trusteeship bodies or the court shall be able to take the decision only with the consent of the child who has reached the age of 10 years.

Article 58. The Child's Right to a First Name, Patronymic and Surname

1. The child shall have the right to a first name, a patronymic and a surname.

2. The name shall be given to the child by an agreement between the parents, and the patronymic shall be awarded by the father's name, unless otherwise is stipulated by the laws of the subjects of the Russian Federation or unless based on the national custom. 3. The child's surname shall be defined by the parents' surname. If the child's parents have different surnames, the child shall be awarded the father's or the mother's surname by an agreement between the parents, unless otherwise stipulated by the laws of the subjects of the Russian Federation.

4. In the absence of an agreement between the parents about the first name and (or) the surname of the child, the dispute shall be resolved by the guardianship and trusteeship body.

5. If the fatherhood is not established, the first name is given to the child by his mother, the patronymic is awarded by the name of the person written down as the child's father (Item 3, Article 51 of the present Code), and the surname - by the surname of his mother.

Article 59. Changing the Child's First Name and Surname

Federal Law No. 140-FZ of November 15, 1997 replaced the words "sixteen years" with the words "fourteen years" in Item 1 of Article 59 of the Family Code of the Russian Federation

1. Upon the joint request of the parents, the guardianship and trusteeship body, proceeding from the child's interests, shall have the right to permit to change the child's first name, and also to change the surname awarded to him, for the surname of the other parent, before he reaches the age of 14 years.

2. If the parents reside apart and the parent with whom the child lives wishes to give his own surname to him, the guardianship and trusteeship body shall resolve this issue, depending on the child's interests and with account for the opinion of the other parent. It shall not be obligatory to take into account the parent's opinion if it is impossible to identify his place of stay, if he is deprived of the parenthood or if he is recognized as legally incapable, and also in the cases, when the parent avoids, for no valid reasons, the participation in the child's upbringing and maintenance.

3. If a child is born of unmarried persons and if the fatherhood is not established in a legal way, the guardianship and trusteeship body, proceeding form the child's interests, shall have the right to change his surname to the surname of the mother, which she bears at the moment of filing such a request.

4. The first name and (or) the surname of the child who has reached the age of 10 years may be changed only with his consent.

Article 60. The Property Rights of the Child

1. The child shall have the right to receive maintenance from his parents and from other family members in the way and in the amount established by Section V of the present Code.

2. The sums, due to the child as alimonies, pensions and allowances, shall be placed at the disposal of the parents (the persons, substituting for them) and shall be spent by them for the child's maintenance, upbringing and education.

The court shall have the right, upon the claim of the parent obliged to pay alimonies for the underaged children, to pass a decision on the transfer of not more than 50 per cent of the amount of the alimonies, due for the payment, onto the accounts opened in the name of the underaged children in the banks.

3. The child shall have the right of ownership to the incomes derived by him/her to the property received by him as a gift or by inheritance, and also to any other property acquired on the child's means.

The child's right to dispose of the property belonging to him by the right of ownership, shall be defined by Article 26 and Article 28 of the Civil Code of the Russian Federation.

In the parents' exercising their legal rights involved in the management of the child's property, spread to them shall be the rules laid down by the civil legislation with respect to the disposal of the property of the ward (Article 37 of the Civil Code of the Russian Federation).

4. The child shall not have the right of ownership to the property of his parents, and the parents shall not have the right of ownership to the property of the child. The children and the parents living together may possess and use each other's property by mutual consent.

Concerning the protection of housing rights of persons not legally of age, see Letter of the Ministry of Education of the Russian Federation No. 09-M of February 20, 1995

5. If the right of the common property of the parents and of the children arises, their rights to the possession, use and disposal of the common property shall be defined by the civil legislation.




Important Disclaimer

The below Family Law text on on the rights of underaged children/minors in Russia should be used for information purposes only and appropriate legal advice should be sought as and when appropriate.

For legal advice on the childrens rights in Russia contact Mr Maxim POLYAKOV, your Russian qualified lawyer, member of the Moscow City Bar Association, tel. +7-495-518-72-62, email maxim@arbitratus.ru (English or Russian).



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maxim@arbitratus.ru

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