A recent California Court of Appeal decision has established the concept of "presumed parent" for persons who have an established relationship with a partner and has developed a parental relationship with that partner’s children. Although this decision involves a same-sex couple with only one of the couples having legal and established parental rights, it appears to open the door to other relationships in which opposite sex partners are in the same situation. This California Court of Appeal decision is not binding in any fashion in Florida courts, but it could be helpful in arguing that a non-married partner of a person who has children has the right to try to establish the necessary elements to show that such person should be a "presumed parent" for purposes of continuing contact, visitation or time sharing with those children.
There have been numerous instances (usually arising from a vindictive ex) in which children have been stripped from their established, long-term relationships with persons who the children had historically deemed to be a "parent.” This should not be allowed to happen in any state. What happened to the rights of children to live stress free and have relationships with those persons they deem to be parents? This is a new arena in the Florida court system, one that has not yet been fully tested. However, for persons who are in this situation, perhaps now is the time to assert this issue and claim entitlement to continuing contact, visitation or time sharing with children that they have been involved in raising.
LaBovick Law Group considers the rights of same-sex parents and opposite sex parents to being equal. Parents are parents regardless of orientation. The issue should be in proving the relationship, not some technicality that harms a child's development and results in children being forcibly kept from persons they have historically had parental relationships with.
For more information, visit us at www.LaBovick.com or call us toll free at 1-888-777-3884.
Article Reference: Mother’s same-sex partner is presumed parent