Status of Children Act 1969

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Reprint as at 24 January 2009

Status of Children Act 1969

Public Act1969 No 18
Date of assent22 August 1969
Commencementsee section 1(2)


Changes authorised by section 17C of the Acts and Regulations Publication Act 1989 have been made in this reprint.

A general outline of these changes is set out in the notes at the end of this reprint, together with other explanatory material about this reprint.

This Act is administered by the Ministry of Justice.




1 Short Title and commencement

2 Interpretation

Part 1
Status of children generally

Children of equal status whether or not parents are or have been married to each other

2A Purpose of sections 3 and 4

3 All children of equal status

Prior instruments and intestacies

4 Instruments executed and intestacies which take place before the commencement of this Act

Presumptions as to parenthood

5 Presumptions as to parenthood

Grant of letters of administration and distribution of estates and property held upon trust

5A Grant of letters of administration

6 Reasonable inquiries to precede distribution

6A Reasonable inquiries that comply

6B Protection of executors, administrators, and trustees

6C Warning notices

6D Service of warning notices


7 Recognition of paternity

8 Evidence and proof of paternity

9 Instruments of acknowledgment may be filed with Registrar-General

10 Declaration as to paternity

Miscellaneous provisions

11 Regulations

12 Repeals and consequential amendments

Part 2
Status of children conceived as result of AHR procedures

Preliminary provisions

13 Purpose of this Part

14 Interpretation

15 AHR procedure defined

16 Application of Part

Rule about maternity

17 Woman who becomes pregnant is mother even though ovum is donated by another woman

Rule about when non-donor partner is parent

18 When woman's non-donor partner is parent, and non-partner semen donor or ovum donor is not parent

Rules about donors of genetic material

19 Partnered woman: ovum donor not parent unless mother's partner at time of conception

20 Woman acting alone: non-partner ovum donor not parent unless later becomes mother's partner

21 Partnered woman: non-partner semen donor not parent

22 Woman acting alone: non-partner semen donor not parent unless later becomes mother's partner

Rights and liabilities if non-partner donor later becomes mother's partner

23 Non-partner ovum donor

24 Non-partner semen donor

25 Only first non-partner donor to later become mother's partner becomes parent

Miscellaneous provisions

26 Conflicting evidence of paternity

27 Partner's consent is presumed

Enactments amended

Reprint notes



  • Title: repealed, on 1 July 2005, by section 3 of the Status of Children Amendment Act 2004 (2004 No 91).