Couple sues state over same-sex parentage rights

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SALT LAKE CITY -- They’ve been denied parentage and now they’re suing.

The ACLU of Utah has filed a lawsuit against the Utah Department of Health, stating that the non-birth parent in a same-sex couple is not allowed on the child’s birth certificate.

“Right now in the eyes of the law I'm not her parent,” said Angie Roe, even though she and her wife Kami were legally married in Utah, and both agreed and consented to having a child together with a sperm donor.

“We just want to be treated the same under the law as opposite sex couples are,” she added.

Kami Roe told FOX 13, “If a man were to go through this process with his wife it wouldn't even be a question so that's just all we're asking is equality.”

The couple is fighting to be recognized under the state’s assisted reproduction statutes so Angie can be added to their daughter’s birth certificate immediately. Going through the step-parent adoption process to become a legal guardian can take months that the couple doesn’t feel they should have to give up.

“A couple of months of waiting is not nothing. The security or the lack of security that are in those months is a real thing but beyond that there's just the principle of equality that they are being treated differently just because of gender of one of the people in the couples and that's not right,” said Staff attorney with the ACLU of Utah, Leah Farrell.

The health department issued the following statement:

“While we have not had the opportunity to review today's filing, we have been working for several months with both the ACLU and the plaintiffs in an attempt to reach a solution. Our hope is to resolve the issue at hand in a manner that serves the best interest of all parties."

Though there have been other lawsuits that address same-sex couples and their adoptive children, this specific issue pertaining to the state’s assisted reproduction statutes has not been addressed.

Couples who have been required to go through the step-parent adoption process have had to go through various steps, including filing a petition to adopt, submitting a background check, waiting until a judge schedules a hearing on their adoption then appearing in person to get the judge’s ruling.

9 comments

  • Mike_in_SLC

    Is fox 13 the LGBT news? I swear every night there is a story about these people. If your idea is to force it down my throat until I will accept it, won’t happen!!! So knock it off!

      • ANOTHERBOB

        Did MIKE_IN_SLC touch a sore spot H8BOB? Common sense would suggest that your typical garden variety type child has one bio-mom and one bio-dad. Mother nature is funny about that. Now I realize that some snails are asexual but that generally doesn’t carry over into humans.

  • bob

    She’s not the father, and the kid DOES have a father. Birth certificates are supposed to reflect reality, not fantasy. This nonsense is getting downright silly now.

  • hb74

    From what I understand is that she is considered to be the step-parent by law, and the complaint is that they’re not being treated the same as heterosexual married couples? Well my husband was a step-parent to my son who had to go through the adoption process to adopt my son, so how is this being treated differently? It sounds equal to me since biologically a child cannot have 2 mothers, so one of them would have to adopt the child to become their legal parent, so this is the same situation so get over it and go through the adoption process just like any other step-parent would have to.

  • Laurel Weaver

    So much for our loving meeting of church and state not to discriminate! I knew it was just a matter of time before the truth came out. At least Indiana didn’t have to hide behind a church!

  • Nathan2B

    The Negative Comments need to stop, if this situation affected you directly you would not be so Malicious towards people Mr Mike and Bob. Your Ignorance reflects what is wrong with today’s society nothing but Bigotry and hate towards people that don’t reflect your version of Morality. Leave them alone

    • ANOTHERBOB

      Lucky is the child whose bio-father is involved in their lives. You certainly would agree wouldn’t you NATHAN2B?

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