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Parentage and Child Custody for Same-Sex Couples

On Behalf of | Jan 18, 2023 | Divorce

In 2015, Illinois passed the Parentage Act. This provides parentage guidelines for same-sex partners. According to this act, a person can be presumed parent of a child under the age of eighteen in the following situations:

  • Spouses were married in a civil union when the child was born

  • The child was born 300 days before the end of a marriage or civil union

  • The child was born during a marriage or civil union, but later the union was declared invalid

  • If after the child’s birth, the birth mother marries someone and also adds them to the birth certificate

Parentage laws are the same for both heterosexual and same-sex marriages.

What Legally Makes a Parent?

If both of the parents are female, there might be a case where only one of them physically gave birth to the child. Biologically, the parent who gave birth to the child is their biological mother. Illinois law states that, when a woman gives birth, the spouse of a mother is automatically considered to be the child’s other parent.

In terms of surrogacy or an embryo transplant, an intended parent is any individual, male or female, that enters an agreement stating that they will be legal parent of the resulting child.

The Intended Parent agreement is the same for parents that are both males. If both parents are male, it usually means that they used a surrogate birth mother. The surrogate would have waived her rights as the child’s mother, which means both of the fathers would then become the intended parents of the child. Legally, even if the parents decide to divorce, they both are the child’s parents.

Same-Sex Child Custody

No matter whether male or female or who you are married to, child custody laws are the same. When going through a divorce, it is most important to focus on what is in the best interest of the child. Deciding what is best for the child is going to lead to some difficult conversations. Creating a parenting plan is the best place to start when discussing child custody. A parenting plan helps both parties describe the allocation of parental responsibilities and parenting time.

If parents are unable to reach a decision about the terms of their parenting plan, the court will make a decision for them. Courts base their decision on what is in the child’s best interests.

Contact a Chicago Child Custody Lawyer

Child custody and parentage disputes can be extremely complicated. Our Chicago family law attorneys will make sure you know your rights as a parent and help you take the legal steps needed to reach your goals. Contact NextLevel Law, P.C. by Daniel R. Hernandez, Esq. today and call 312-442-2225 to schedule a free consultation.