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Same-Sex Parents Custody

Same-sex parents who have adopted their children have the same rights and responsibilities as any other parents.

Same-sex parents provide loving homes for children all across the county. However, when a divorce or separation takes place, things can get tricky. If you are in the process of ending a same-sex relationship and trying to arrange child custody, you may be worried about being denied the equal opportunity to raise your child. After all, determining custody depends on a number of factors, such as the adoption status of the child and whether you are able to get along with your spouse.

The Pittsburgh custody lawyers at Pittsburgh Divorce & Family Law, LLC appreciate the turmoil that can arise in these situations. With years of legal experience, we can help you determine the likelihood of obtaining custody. Attorney Anthony Piccirilli will work relentlessly to establish your parental status and protect the best interest of your child.

Call (412) 471-5100 today to see you the relationship with your child can be maintained.


The Number of Legal Parents

The ability to pursue parental rights depends entirely upon the legal status of both parents. If both individuals in a same-sex couple are legal parents, custody or visitation can be pursued in the traditional fashion. If the parents are unable to work out a parenting plan on their own, the parent, or parents, seeking custody would have to file a legal petition. From there, they would need to display why the custody arrangement would be in the best interest of the child. Two people in a same-sex couple might be legal parents for any one of the following reasons:

  • The child was born into a legal marriage or domestic partnership in which the relationship confers parental rights onto both partners in a same-sex couple
  • The child was jointly adopted

For an individual who is not established as a parent, gaining custody can be extremely difficult. Whether you were not married when you had the child or your spouse is denying contact, an individual with no official parent-child relationship cannot seek legal custody, physical custody, or visitation rights. However, several states, Pennsylvania included, make it possible to gain parental rights by proving your intent to raise a child.

Becoming a Parent in the Eyes of the Law

For a non-legal parent in a same-sex couple, the only way to gain custody of a child is to establish the status of in loco parentis. The doctrine of in loco parentis states that a party, with the consent of a legal parent, becomes a legal parent when they take on the responsibilities of parenting without going through the process of adoption. The evidence needed to enact this doctrine varies from case to case. The only way to determine the viability of this route is by consulting with an experienced attorney. Once a person’s legal rights are established, they may pursue legal custody, physical custody, and visitation. However, just as in any child custody case, the party must prove that gaining parental rights would be in the best interest of the child.

Let Anthony Piccirilli Protect Your Rights

Forcing a child to part with one of their parents can cause lasting psychological damage. If you are attempting to seek custody as a non-legal parent, it can certainly feel like an uphill battle. After all, you only seek the opportunity to raise your child. If you have exhausted all other options, such as conferring with your spouse and filing for adoption, it might be time to pursue legal action.

The Pittsburgh custody lawyers at Pittsburgh Divorce & Family Law, LLC know that a custody battle can cause serious and irreversible harm to a family. Attorney Anthony Piccirilli will do everything in his power to establish your parentage through in loco parentis.

Call (412) 471-5100 now to see how you can reach a custody agreement that benefits everyone.