BaltimoreSun.com reports that Maryland’s highest court has ruled in favor of an adoptive mother who seeks to deny her former partner visitation rights to a child that both had cared for during their relationship.
Janice M. adopted a child from India during her 18-year relationship with Margaret K. After the women ended the relationship, Margaret petitioned the court for custody and won.
The Court equated Margaret’s parenting contribution as “de facto parenthood” – which is not recognized in Maryland.
David Rocah, from the American Civil Liberties Union of Maryland, told the Sun: “This decision leaves thousands of children and families unnecessarily vulnerable and will undoubtedly end up denying children the love and support of a parent who has been a significant part of their life. The Court of Appeals has gone against the modern trend, though it’s certainly not alone in this regard.”
Laws governing families vary greatly from state to state, and court cases continually change the legal parameters of same-sex couples and their children.