Legal Aspects About Children Of Legal Age

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Legal aspects about children of legal age


In recent years, some cases of children of legal age have led their parents to justice to demand the payment of the food pension. And there have also been, on the contrary, cases of parents who have attended the courts for the same reason: to request the extinction of the food pension obligation of their children of legal age.


These somewhat extreme situations are the reflection of a new world reality of which Spain is not exempt. This is the appearance of the so -called ninis: adult children who neither work, nor study. The phenomenon is the result of a difficult economic reality that makes children more expensive and more difficult to leave home and become independent. These types of situations also cause parents to carry a heavy load for much longer. Next, we will see some legal aspects about the children of legal age.

Legal concepts

Article 39.3 of the Spanish Constitution establishes the obligation of the parents to assist all order to the children in or outside the marriage, during their minority of age and in the other cases in which it legally proceeds. As for parental authority, article 154.1 of the Spanish Civil Code provides that non -emancipated minor children are under the parental authority of their parents. Powering parental is a responsibility of parents that should always be exercised by thinking about the supreme interest of children.

The same article establishes that parental rights includes some rights and obligations. Parents have, for example, the obligation to ensure their children, have them in their company, feed them, educate them and seek comprehensive training. In case of separation or divorce from the parents, a judge will determine the contribution of each parent to meet these needs that are known as alimony.

Parental authority and majority

When the children turn 18, parental parental or guardianship ends about them. That is, that the set of rights and obligations that parents have on minor children, in a personal and patrimonial sense, expires. However, there are some exceptions. One of them is that of the legally emancipated children, in which case the parental authority ends at the time of emancipation, even if the children are minors. It can also happen that parental authority extends beyond 18 years in case the children have been declared incapable.

Is there the obligation to provide food to children of legal age?

The law establishes the age of majority as the limit to exercise parental rights;But in practice the parents still have many obligations with their children after that age. In this way, the parents’ obligation to provide food, care and protection of children ends when they reach their economic independence.

Young people currently have many difficulties to become independent and live at their parents’ home much longer;So the obligation of parents extends far beyond 18 years. And this obligation is protected by law. This means that a child of elderly who still lives with his parents and has no economic independence can claim before the courts if his parents no longer want to keep him.


The legislation establishes that children of legal age continue to maintain their right to alimony if they remain in a situation of need. However, there are some elements that should be considered. On the one hand, this need of need should not be attributable to the elderly. In other words, this need should not be the product of an irresponsible behavior of the child. If there are controversies that arrive before court, the judges will consider whether the children have actively sought work or continue to train. In order for a judge to determine that a child of elderly remains creditor to the obligation of food by his parents, he must demonstrate that he has done everything possible to overcome his precariousness situation.  

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