Fundamental Parental Rights

Parental Rights Foundation’s Will Estrada and Jim Mason explain why fundamental parental rights laws help protect children and families in every state where they are adopted.

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 model.

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:

Read more about the importance of this model at American Enterprise Institute here:

Read an endorsement from ALEC Action and Gingrich360 here:


  1. […] 1246 into law will make South Dakota the 15th state in the nation to protect parental rights as a fundamental right in state […]

  2. […] Fundamental Parental Rights […]

  3. […] Fundamental Parental Rights […]