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Physical punishment as a form of discipline. A parent or guardian has traditionally held the common-law right to inflict reasonable and moderate punishment on his children; however, an amendment to the Children Act 2004 has removed this as a defence in cases in which the child is caused actual bodily harm. A parent or guardian was also formerly entitled to authorize someone else * in loco parentis to inflict chastisement, such as a school. Corporal punishment is now illegal in both state and private schools, whether or not the parent consents. A husband does not have the right to chastise his wife, nor a wife her husband. Illegal chastisement may amount to one of the offences against the person.

Subjects: Law.

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