Establishing Parentage for LGBTQ Couples

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Establishing paternity is usually a pretty straightforward process, maternity even more so. In fact, you don’t even need to prove a biological relationship to establish paternity—if the father says he’s the father, and the mother consents, they sign a paper and paternity is established. For same-sex couples, however, the process can be a lot more expensive and complicated.

When biological ties aren’t enough

Vice recently published a report on the struggles of a San Diego same-sex couple to establish legal parentage over their child. To have their child, one partner provided the egg while the other carried the baby to term. However, despite these obvious biological ties, the partner who did not carry out the pregnancy has not been able to establish maternity—even though she is the child’s mother.

This has led to difficulty claiming maternity leave benefits and could cause serious problems with things like medical decisions and visitation down the line. Additionally, for same-sex couples who separate, it can put one partner at a grave disadvantage when it comes to petitioning for custody.

Alternative ways to establish parentage

One common route taken by same-sex couples is to legally adopt their children. This way they and their children can have the legal protections afforded to parents, although it seems distinctly unfair for parents to need to pay thousands of dollars and go through the intense legal process of adoption for their own biological children.

Family lawyers for same-sex couples

As the laws surrounding same-sex couples continue to evolve, LGBTQ individuals invariably face unique challenges. At the office of Ernest A. Casacca, Attorney at Law, we are dedicated to understanding your unique situation and coming up with effective strategies to accomplish your goals. We are proud of our record of success serving all families in Southern California for over 25 years.

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