Co-Parents and Gay and Lesbian Parents The Law Can Help to Protect Your Children
As I am planning on co-parenting soon to have my own child with a friend and in my lesbian relationship I have been doing some research on the laws and rights that Gay and lesbian parents should be aware of for the family and situation.
Gay parents like me can conceive a child a few ways, either with donor insemination, adoption and co-parenting, in all of these options the parents have to consider the lack of rights that the non-legal parent has. It’s crap, but unfortunately, in a lot of cases, only the biological or adoptive parent is legally recognised and where the problems can arise with that is that this can put the other parent in a rather helpless position should the relationship ever end through death or a relationship break-up.
Some of the solutions are getting a second parent adoption which would give the co-parent all the same legal rights and responsibilities as the original parent, another alternative is to have a parenting contract.
What is a Parenting Contract?
When a gay and lesbian couple have a child you will need to make family and decisions for the child together but the law states that in gay and lesbian relationships the non-legal parent is not entitled to these rights unless a court has given this right to them. So you can make a parenting agreement, which puts the partners’ parenting decisions in writing this will prove legally that the role of the non-legal parent is equal and legal when raising your child.
This parenting agreement or ‘contract’ should describe both of your intentions for your child for now and in the future.
It should state, that you both as parents made the decision to have a child together and that you both intend to raise the child together always even if the relationship should ever break up. It should state that both parents have a legal obligation to look after the child financially and list each co-parent’s childcare duties like disciplining and the decisions in the household. You must write in the agreement what your custody and visitation rights would be in case of a break up and guardianship in case one of you passes away.