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1 a : a person who begets or brings forth offspring
: the natural parents of a child born of their marriage NOTE: The biological father of an illegitimate child is usually not considered the child's parent absent a judicial determination of paternity. There have been exceptions, based mainly on the father's attitude toward, support of, or involvement with the child.
b : a person who legally adopts a child
c : a person or entity that owes to a child a legally imposed duty of support
d : a stepparent where designated by statute
2 : an entity or group that gives rise to or acquires another usually subsidiary entity or group [a company]
: a corporation that owns a required minimum percentage of the stock of another corporation compare affiliate
Source: Merriam-Webster's Dictionary of Law ©1996. Merriam-Webster, Incorporated. Published under license with Merriam-Webster, Incorporated.