Child custody disputes are not uncommon when parents divorce. These disputes can certainly have their share of complications. Just determining the terms of visitation can take quite a bit of negotiating. But divorcing same-sex couples can have added issues, as demonstrated by a recent U.S. Supreme Court decision.
First, some background on the case. A lesbian couple living in Georgia had three children. One of the women was inseminated by an anonymous donor and gave birth to the children. The other woman adopted the children. The couple later moved to Alabama, where they ended their relationship. The adoptive mother’s access to the children was denied, so she filed suit.
But the Alabama Supreme Court denied her access to the children by ruling that the Georgia court had acted erroneously when granting her parental rights. The case eventually made its way to the U.S. Supreme Court, where the basic question under consideration was if Alabama was obligated to recognize the adoption that was established in Georgia.
Happily, the Supreme Court had no difficulty finding that Alabama did have to recognize the adoption. This decision relates nicely to a statement made last year by Justice Anthony Kennedy wherein he expressed that the law supports the idea that lesbians and gays can create families that are supportive and loving.
And although this case began in Alabama, it demonstrates how the courts are still interpreting and even misinterpreting laws regarding same-sex custody issues. Therefore, if you and your partner are splitting and child custody has become a matter of contention, you may wish to contact a Colorado family law attorney.
An attorney who is familiar with the specific issues involving same-sex divorce and child custody can work to help you resolve the dispute and maintain your parental rights.
Source: Orlando Sentinel, “Court flawless in gay-rights ruling,” March 8, 2016