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The Right to Be ParentsLGBT Families and the Transformation of Parenthood$
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Carlos A. Ball

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780814739303

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814739303.001.0001

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Breaking up Is Hard to Do

Breaking up Is Hard to Do

Chapter:
(p.83) 3 Breaking up Is Hard to Do
Source:
The Right to Be Parents
Author(s):

Carlos A. Ball

Publisher:
NYU Press
DOI:10.18574/nyu/9780814739303.003.0004

This chapter focuses on cases involving children of so-called planned lesbian and gay families, with particular emphasis on how courts decide whether any given person is a parent to begin with. It cites the statutes enacted in Delaware and the District of Columbia recognizing functional or de facto parenthood, which can benefit nonbiological LGBT parents. It also profiles legal disputes pitting lesbian mothers against one another: biological mothers who argued that it was in their children's interests not to have judicially mandated contact with their former same-sex partners, and lesbians who insisted that they should be recognized by the law as parents because they functioned as such and the children considered them to be their parents. The chapter explores how courts have grappled with the question of the parental rights of same-sex partners of legal parents and highlights the legal rights of nonbiological mothers.

Keywords:   children, courts, de facto parenthood, LGBT parents, lesbian mothers, biological mothers, same-sex partners, parental rights, legal parents, nonbiological mothers

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