New York High Court Grants Parental Rights to Ex-Lesbian Partner

New York’s high court, the Court of Appeals, ruled Tuesday to give visitation rights over a child born into a Vermont civil union to the mother’s former lesbian partner. The court based its decision on the fact that Vermont courts have interpreted civil unions to confer legal parenthood on the partners.

At the same time, the Court resisted efforts to overturn a 19-year-old precedent that holds only a biological connection or legal adoption establishes parental rights under New York State law - meaning that in all other cases where recognizing the laws of other states is not an issue, the New York policy for determining parenthood stands.

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