Lesbian Parent Denied Adoption Requested as Extra Caution

, New York Law Journal

   |4 Comments

Because she is already listed on her son's birth certificate, adoption is "neither necessary nor available" under New York law to a lesbian seeking to cement her parental status in jurisdictions that do not recognize same-sex marriage, a judge has ruled.

What's being said

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    (**...presumed the legal parent of a child **BORN** to a lawful wife)..

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    Had the Surrogate rule differently, it would imply that birth certificates are not sufficient as evidence of parentage. It seems extreme, but such a ruling could mean that all married fathers (under common law presumed the legal parent of a child for to a wife) would need to petition the court to affirm their parental status through adoption proceedings! The Surrogate was wise to prevent such a ludicrous outcome.

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    Interesting article. Completely unintelligible headline.

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    While in some sense logical, this decision is mistaken, in my view, because at present about 30 states do not recognize same-sex marriages and would not automatically recognize the parental status of the petitioner based solely on their same-sex marriage. However, it is well established that adoption decrees, as judicial records, are owed full faith and credit in other states, although there is some disagreement about how that recognition would be enforced (through state court action vs. federal court action). Granting an adoption on this kind of petition harms nobody and will likely provide important protection for travel through non-recognition jurisdictions.

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