Rainbow rising in Colorado.
In Colorado, the governor – Jared Polis – signed a bill that will help resolve a legal issue that denies same-sex parents the legal custody of their own children. The new law, formally called H.B. 22-1153, specifically streamlines the adoption process for same-sex parents whose children were conceived by assisted reproduction by allowing LGBTQIA parents to declare a “voluntary acknowledgment of parentage,” which is a statement of parental rights with the authority of a court order.
In 2015, the Supreme Court of the US actually already ruled that married same-sex parents of children conceived by a sperm donor or birth surrogate should be listed on the child’s birth certificate, similar to married different-sex couples who have kids the same way. The actual practice is, however, contentious, since state laws and family court judges may still force same-sex parents to use additional time, money, and legal steps to gain legal custody of their children.
In a statement released after Polis signed the bill, Human Rights Campaign (HRC) legal director Sarah Warbelow said that “this bill is a significant step forward in ensuring the legal recognition of the parent-child relationship for children conceived with reproductive assistance… Modernizing the laws benefits many LGBTQ+ people in Colorado as they become parents and create families. By removing barriers to the legal recognition of parenthood, lawmakers are affirming families and providing greater security to children.”