Outlook Ohio published this article by Carol Ann Fey and LeeAnn Massucci regarding challenges the LGBT community faces in establishing and raising families. In the article, they urge couples to consider written custody agreements, which,
when properly prepared and approved by the juvenile court, establish shared custody and result in legal documents that can be provided to day care providers, health care providers, schools, etc., to establish the heart-parent’s rights to participate in those activities in the same way the bio-parent can. Similarly, in the event that the bio-parent dies, the establishment of shared custody should survive and permit the heart-parent to retain custody of the child. And in the event that the bio-parent and heart-parent split up, they are enforceable documents that provide detailed guidance to the court if the parties cannot resolve parenting time and support issues on their own.
Read the full article in Outlook Ohio: Lesbian Custody Disputes in Court: Progress and Pitfalls
UPDATE: Although gay parents now have different rights thanks to Obergefell, bio-parents and heart-parents — particularly when unmarried — still may face issues when it comes to child custody.
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