Thursday, June 30, 2016

Pratt rules in same-sex birth certificate case

Posted By on Thu, Jun 30, 2016 at 2:28 PM

click to enlarge John F. Fitzgerald's birth certificate - U.S. NATIONAL ARCHIVES AND RECORDS ADMINISTRATION
  • U.S. National Archives and Records Administration
  • John F. Fitzgerald's birth certificate
Busy day for U.S. District Judge Tanya Walton Pratt, who delivered both a preliminary injunction in the ACLU's case regarding HEA1337, and ruled that Indiana must list both same-sex partners on birth certificates. 

Here's our primer on why this case matters, by Annika Larson.

"Under Indiana law, if a man and woman are married and the woman is artificially inseminated with the sperm of a third-party donor, the husband in that marriage is then identified as the father of the child. In contrast, if a same-sex couple is married and choose to have a child through artificial insemination, only the birthmother is placed on the birth certificate. The other woman in the marriage, the second parent, must then undergo the expensive and tedious process of step-parent adoption. Whereas a heterosexual couple can walk out of the hospital both being parents, a same-sex couple leaves the hospital with only one of the women being a parent." 
Lafayette Journal and Courier reported extensively on one of the couple at the center of the lawsuit, writing in February 2015:

When Ashlee and Ruby Henderson's son was born on Dec. 22, they had the start of the family they'd been planning and hoping for since they'd met six years ago.

"Our miracle baby," Ashlee said.

With a change in Indiana's marriage laws, the two Lafayette women were able to get married in November — "making it feel even more real as a family," Ashlee said. But when the Hendersons asked to have both of their names listed as parents on their son's birth certificate, the Tippecanoe County Health Department declined.

"Not without a court order, they told us, even though we were legally married," Ashlee said. "If that's what it takes, I guess."
It was what it took, and today, the Hendersons — and same sex couples all over the state — won their case. 

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Katherine Coplen

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Always looking for my new favorite band. Always listening to my old ones, too. Always baking cakes. Always collecting rock and roll dad quotes.

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