FUNDAMENTAL RIGHT

fundamental right.

1. A right derived from natural or fundamental law.

2. Constitutional law. A significant component of liberty, encroachments of which are rigorously tested by courts to ascertain the soundness of purported governmental justifications. • A fundamental right triggers strict scrutiny to determine whether the law violates the Due Process Clause or the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment. As enunciated by the Supreme Court, fundamental rights include voting, interstate travel, and various aspects of privacy (such as marriage and contraception rights). — Also termed fundamental interest. See STRICT SCRUTINY. Cf. SUSPECT CLASSIFICATION. [Cases: Constitutional Law 252.

5. C.J.S. Constitutional Law §§ 953, 966–967, 980.]