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Court hearing family law case concerning consent to have children

In what could be a precedent-setting case, the top court in one state is considering whether to grant a woman's request to have her parental rights terminated. What makes this particular family law case unique is it concerns whether a spouse in a same-sex marriage consented to have a child through a sperm donor. The case is being followed closely by same-sex advocacy groups in California and across the country. 

The former couple married in 2013, and the divorce was initiated in 2015. They purportedly discussed having a child through artificial insemination, though the petitioner disputes those claims and says that she was not involved in the process and that her then-wife conceived the baby during her deployment. She claims she has not bonded with the child, who was born after she commenced divorce proceedings.

The mother asserts that the decision to have a child was made jointly. Her lawyer argues that this case is really about the former spouse attempting to avoid her obligations to pay child support. Advocacy groups following the proceedings believe the Hawaii Supreme Court's decision could set back the rights of same-sex couples if it agrees to terminate the petitioner's parental rights.

The court will issue its ruling at a later date. Most family law cases involving same-sex couples and parental rights concern someone seeking to establish them as a precursor to pursuing custodial rights. Those in California who are struggling to resolve family law concerns typically benefit from the input and assistance of a knowledgeable attorney.  

Source:, "Consent to having children at heart of same-sex military couple's child support case", Jennifer Sinco Kelleher, Dec. 14, 2017

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