New York took a significant step forward by allowing Judgement of Parentage orders for LGBTQ+ families. These court orders offer an efficient alternative to second-parent adoption.
It is important for parents to be aware of this option to secure their rights in an ever-evolving legal landscape.
Securing legal equality
Judgment of Parentage orders promote equality for non-traditional families. These orders can establish legal parent-child relationships regardless of genetic connection. LGBTQ+ parents are four times more likely to have families with adopted children or step-children. Furthermore, many same-sex couples use assisted reproduction technology that differs from traditional methods of family formation. Many LGBTQ+ families have distinct needs that Judgment of Parentage orders can help address.
Parentage orders allow non-gestating parents to participate in important childrearing decisions. Likewise, children are more likely to get the support and guidance they need when legal parentage exists. Judgment of Parentage orders can also give recognition to families formed through assisted reproduction methods.
Obtaining a Judgment of Parentage order offers several advantages. The process is generally quicker and more affordable. Families can even initiate the process during pregnancy. This ensures the order is effective immediately upon the child’s birth. Unlike adoption, a Judgment of Parentage order confirms existing parentage, making it a more streamlined option.
When obtaining a Judgment of Parentage order, the family must petition the court. This petition collects information on parental residency status and details about the child. It also addresses sperm donor involvement.
While Judgment of Parentage orders can offer numerous benefits, not everyone should choose them. In most cases, the parent and child must be legal residents of New York to be eligible. Second-parent adoption is sometimes the more suitable choice, especially for families with dual citizenship. Parentage orders may also face recognition challenges in states with differing laws. Families planning to move out of state might consider legal adoption before leaving New York.
Parentage orders provide LGBTQ+ parents with the legal recognition they deserve while protecting their children’s rights.