The challenges in child adoption for homosexual couples

Adoption and Fostering What are adoption and fostering? Adoption is the term given for the permanent transfer of legal rights in relation to the parental responsibility of a child. Foster care describes the temporary acquisition of guardianship rights in relation to a child. Foster care is often used when a child is waiting to be adopted or the courts are considering an adoption order.

The challenges in child adoption for homosexual couples

Gay and Lesbian Adoption Laws Gay and Lesbian Adoption Laws Same sex couples face several unique legal issues when they decide to become a family with children.

The Supreme Court ruling affirming same-sex marriage rights nationwide removed some, but not all, of these legal hurdles. Gay and lesbian adoption laws in some states that restrict married LGBT couples from adopting typically involve issues regarding the religious rights of adoption agencies.

Supporters of these restrictions claim agencies should not be compelled to place children with families they find morally objectionable. For a lesbian couple, this usually involves finding a male donor or visiting a sperm bank and then having one of the couple become pregnant.

The other parent in such a partnership then can become a legal second parent through stepparent or second parent adoption. Not all states allow such adoption, however, and adoption laws vary from state to state.

Gay men can also become legal parents of a child in a similar fashion through the use of a surrogate mother. There are often gay and lesbian parenting groups in many large cities around the country that are willing to give advice to couples looking to raise children. The following sites can also provide you with helpful information: Legal parents must also support their children financially.


Even if the couple divorces, both parents still are the legal parents of the child under this parental presumption. In many cases one partner can legally adopt the biological child of the other partner through adoption procedures such as stepparent adoption or domestic partner adoption.

Before same-sex marriage was legally recognized by the Supreme Court insome states that allowed same-sex marriage also applied the parental presumption to such spouses. Other states, such as California and New Jersey, would even grant legal parent status upon the birth of a child to unmarried gay and lesbian couples as long as the couple was in a civil union or domestic partnership.

Sinceas all states are now required to recognize same sex marriage, some are also enacting laws applying the parental presumption to same-sex spouses. However, this is an uneven process among the states and still a focus of litigation.

Sexual orientation

Relying on the assumption that the legalization of same sex marriage will automatically result in legal parent status upon the birth or adoption of a child can be a risky move. Attorneys regularly recommend that non-biological parents go through the legal procedures required for stepparent or second parent adoption as a precaution.

This legal relationship will exist as a backup form of security if the gay or lesbian couples decide to travel to a state that does not recognize the parental rights of a same-sex married couple.

Gay and lesbian couples should plan on making arrangements with respect to their children and the laws of their state. By doing this now, you may be able to save time, money and hardship later on. These problems are difficult to resolve because of the unique legal nature of gay and lesbian unions.

When heterosexual couples split up, a court will issue a child custody order if the two parents cannot come to an agreement. In the worst case scenario, a court would treat a second parent as a complete stranger to the relationship between the child and the first parent, giving the first parent the absolute right to dictate all future interactions between the child and the second parent.

Courts now must allow a second parent court-ordered visitation timeas is the case with heterosexual parents.

The challenges in child adoption for homosexual couples

Gay and Lesbian Adoption Laws: Parenting Agreements After you and your partner have committed to a joint parenting relationship, the first thing that you both should do is sit down and draw up a parenting agreement. This document should reflect that, although only one of you might be the true, legal parent of the child, both of you consider yourselves and each other to be the parents of the child.

You should both also indicate that you know the rights and responsibilities that come with parenting your child. Lastly, the agreement should also include a clause that you both wish to continue parenting even if your relationship ends.

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These agreements offer greater certainty when they cover financial issues as well, such as the costs of education, food and housing. In addition, the legal parent should also express their intention that, even if the relationship ends, he or she will grant generous visitation rights to the second parent.

If a same-sex relationship does end, it is important that both the legal and second parent of the child try hard to honor the parenting agreement. In the beginning, both parents agreed to raise the child without some of the legal protections afforded by adoption or legal parentage, so they should try to recognize this point and abide by the agreement.

The two parties should make a concerted effort to resolve their differences before taking their dispute to the courts.Same-sex adoption laws have come a long way in the United States. For many years, same-sex couples could not adopt together due to discrimination and adoption .

Instrumentum Laboris - XIV Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops, The vocation and the mission of the family in the Church and in the contemporary world, 23 June Joint adoption by same-sex couples is legal in 27 countries and in some sub-national territories.

Furthermore, 5 countries have legalized some form of step-child adoption.

Adoption and Its Challenges | CHADIS - Comprehensive Health & Development Interactive System

Unfortunately, the history of same-sex adoption is rather brief — but not for lack of interest or desire to adopt by hopeful LGBT parents. History has not treated LGBT individuals kindly and, therefore, their ability to adopt — and even get married — is a very recent development. Nonetheless, social workers and even some gay men and lesbians considering adoption wonder if it is in the best interests of a child to be raised by homosexual parents.

"It can be too hard a . LifeLong Adoptions is an independent contractor and under the supervision of Lutheran Child and Family Services, License # Marketing and advertising, identifying a child for adoption, matching adoptive parents with biological parents, and arranging for the placement of a child are services provided by LifeLong Adoptions under the supervision of Lutheran Child & Family Services, One.

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