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Collins Dictionary of Law © W.J. Stewart, 2006

MOTHER, domestic relations. A woman who has borne a child.
     2. It is generally the duty of a mother to support her child, when she is left a widow, until he becomes of age, or is able to maintain himself; 8 Watts, R. 366; and even after he becomes of age, if he be chargeable to the public, she may, perhaps, in all the states, be compelled, when she has sufficient means, to support him. But when the child has property sufficient for his support, she is not, even during his minority, obliged to maintain him. 1 Bro. C. C. 387; 2 Mass. R. 415; 4 Miss. R. 97.
     3. When the father dies without leaving a testamentary guardian, at common law, the mother is entitled to be the guardian of the person and estate of the infant, until he arrives at fourteen years, when he is able to choose a guardian. Litt. sect. 123; 3 Co. 38; Co. Litt. 84 b; 2 Atk. 14; Com Dig. B, D, E; 7 Ves. 348. See 10 Mass. 135, 140; 15 Mass. 272; 4 Binn. 487; 4 Stew. & Part. 123; 2 Mass. 415; Harper, R. 9; 1 Root, R. 487.
     4. In Pennsylvania, the orphans' court will, in such case, appoint a guardian until the infant shall attain his fourteenth year. During the joint lives of the parents, (q.v.) the father (q.v.) is alone responsible for the support of the children; and has the only control over them, except when in special cases the mother is allowed to have possession of them. 1 P. A. Browne's Rep. 143; 5 Binn. R. 520; 2 Serg. & Rawle 174. Vide 4 Binn. R. 492, 494.
     5. The mother of a bastard child, as natural guardian, has a right to the custody and control of such child, and is bound to maintain it. 2 Mass. 109; 12 Mass. 387, 433; 2 John. 375; 15 John. 208; 6 S. & R. 255; 1 Ashmead, 55.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
References in periodicals archive ?
The Idaho woman was a gestational mother who was pregnant with twins for commissioning parents from Spain, where surrogacy had been made illegal.
The gestational mother contributes to the development of the child.
It is unfair to hold the gestational mother legally responsible for a child she did not want, did not intend to parent, and is not genetically related to.
The gestational mother generally has her expenses paid and a stipend provided by the couple, although she may agree to do it as an act of love for a relative or friend.
The court discards this argument, noting in footnote one that it could conceivably treat both the genetic mother and the gestational mother as parents.
Based on the majority decision of Jewish authorities as to the identity of the gestational mother as the legal mother, Part III discusses the feasibility of enforcing surrogacy contracts under Jewish law in comparison to the factors dictating whether these contracts are enforced or not enforced in the U.S.
In addition to being consistent, a theory of legal parenthood must award parenthood in a way that respects all parties' liberty and equality interests.(6) In this Note, I propose a normative model of legal parenthood based on a Lockean labor theory of property that awards parenthood to the gestational mother, or those who commissioned her services.
Disclosure of the existence of the child's gestational mother may or may not occur at a later time.
She was the gestational mother and the genetic grandmother of the triplets.
This particular case may also have seemed especially easy for many because the gestational mother was black, although the judge himself carefully refrained from even mentioning race in his opinion.
The government proposed criminal offenses for research on gene manipulation of human embryos, cloning of such embryos, or creating hybrid embryos, but left two alternatives on embryo research to a Parliament "free vote": (1) A complete prohibition on such research (except where there is an intention to transfer the embryos to a gestational mother as part of an in vitro fertilization procedure), or (2) "Controlled" research on embryos up to fourteen days after fertilization (a recommendation previously made by the 1984 Warnock report), carried out under the auspices of an independent Statutory Licensing Authority (SLA).

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