What is the legal role of a parent?

Legally it can be defined as being responsible for the financial and physical, educational needs of children,until the age of majority. That age in most states is 18. Legal responsibility also includes criminal or civil disobedience incurred. For example if your sixteen year old has an auto accident (regardless if you gave them permission or not) you would be equally responsible for damages. Response to above: Unless of course you charge your child with theft. Parents can also be sued now in Canada to support their children in University if it is proved the young adult is making efforts to further their career, and not wasting time in school. This of course is a Canadian law, and will inevitably spread to the USA within time, as socialism always does. As far as responsiblity goes, men have 90% of the onus of resonsiblity.