Main | Tuesday, September 21, 2010

NY Gov. Paterson Signs Law Allowing Joint Adoption by Unmarried Couples

Gov. David Paterson has signed a bill allowing all unmarried couples to jointly adopt in New York state.
The measure signed by Gov. David Paterson also substitutes the gender-neutral term "married couple" in the adoption statute for "husband and wife." According to sponsors, that partly codifies state appeals court rulings and clears up complications from joint adoption as a two-step process. It’s also meant to help ensure children get support, insurance and other benefits from both adults, as well as lifelong relationships even if couples split up. Single gay people can already legally adopt in New York. "Because same sex couples can’t get married and some heterosexual people don’t want to get married, they were not allowed to adopt a non-related child together," said Assembly member Linda Rosenthal, a Manhattan Democrat and chief sponsor. "If there is a foster child that neither is related to, they had to do it separately. What happens often is one does it, and the other says, ’Yeah, I’ll get to it.’ But it’s a costly endeavor. It’s a separate procedure for both."
The bill becomes effective immediately.

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