Keywords: parent, parenthood, family, adoption, surrogacy, assisted reproduction, artificial insemination, European Court of Human Rights
Abstract: What is a family? The answer remains unclear from both sociological and legal perspective. Traditionally, the family is perceived as a group of people related by blood or marriage, centred on a married couple and their dependents. Considering current social reality, such a concept has become rather obsolete. It is therefore becoming increasingly unclear who and under what conditions should be entitled to become parents in the legal sense. The topic was repeatedly approached by the European Court of Human Rights. The relevant judgments discuss different fractional questions but none of them provides a complete concept of what the limits of legal access to parenthood are. The paper aims to analyse all the judgments related to the question of the access to legal parenthood and to identify what limits set the case law to both legislation and decision-making process regarding legal access to parenthood.