Fundamental Parental Rights

View the model as adopted by the American Legislative Exchange Council.

The United States Supreme Court has long held that parental rights are “among those
fundamental liberty interests protected by the Fourteenth Amendment to the
Constitution.” Yet, the level of respect these rights should receive, especially at the state
level, has been left a little vague. As a result, state statutes that protect or would violate
these rights are pretty much all over the place.

Most states protect parental rights with “strict judicial scrutiny,” the highest level of
protection—but only in court precedent. Nothing in the statutes of most states
protects fundamental parental rights.

Our model offers a basic statement to add protection of parental rights, including this
high standard of judicial scrutiny, right into the statutory laws of your state.
Details can be added. Your lawmakers may want to flesh this out into a full-blown
Parents’ Bill of Rights. But it all starts right here, with the basics found in our

This model, adopted by ALEC in 2021, is ready to be modified to protect parental rights
in your state.

Read more about this model’s adoption at ALEC on this page: