Is Second-Parent Adoption Still Necessary for Married Same-Sex Couples?

LGBT Couple in AlbuquerqueIn the past year, several states have legalized same-sex marriage. Now, married LGBT couples are looking for ways to bring children into their families. Many of them actually consider second parent adoption. If you’re one of them, read on to know the things you need to learn about this legal matter.

Children Conceived and Born During the Marriage says second-parent adoption is available to LGBT couples who have a child that is currently legally connected to one of them. This type of adoption will only occur once the non-biological parent decided to legally adopt the child without taking the parental rights away from their spouse, who’s the biological parent of the child. But what if the child was conceived and born during the marriage? Aren’t you both the legal parents of the child?

In New Mexico, the courts presume children born to legally married LGBT couples as children of the marriage. However, some states consider this presumption invalid. This will be a definite issue if you move to other states that don’t recognize the same LGBT rights as New Mexico does. So, it is best that you obtain a second-parent adoption if you’re the non-biological parent of the child.

Sperm or Egg Donor’s Parental Rights

In any adoption process, known sperm or egg donors must terminate their parental rights. But what if the LGBT couple used a sperm or egg from an anonymous or unknown donor? Could they just skip the termination of rights process? The answer is it depends. In some states, you need to prove that you’ve used the help of an anonymous donor to conceive a child. So to prevent issues, it is better if you get a letter from a sperm bank or fertility clinic that confirms you don’t know the identity of the donor or the other biological parent of your child.

Second-parent adoption is necessary to protect your rights as a parent to your child. But since this type of adoption is a complicated legal matter, it is best if you consult a lawyer.