When Same-Sex Marriage Ends, Ex-Spouse May Have Custody Rights

Mark Hills writes about a recent Michigan Court of Appeals case, Stankevich v Milliron, COA Docket No. 310710, in which the Obergefell v Hodges decision was applied the equitable parent doctrine. The article begins as follows:

On June 26, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its opinion in Obergefell v Hodges, in which it ruled that the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution requires a state to license a marriage between two people of the same sex and to recognize a marriage between two people of the same sex when their marriage was lawfully licensed and performed out-of-state.

A recent opinion of the Michigan Court of Appeals applied the Obergefell decision and reversed the dismissal of a claim under the equitable parent doctrine.

The parties in Stankevich v Milliron, COA Docket No. 310710, decided November 19, 2015, were married in Canada in July 2007. Prior to the marriage, the defendant was artificially inseminated and gave birth to a child during the marriage. The parties separated in March 2009. An initial agreement to a visitation schedule between the plaintiff and the minor child did not last. The plaintiff then filed a complaint alleging the parties had an agreement for conceiving and raising the minor child and that she had fully participated in caring for the minor child. The plaintiff requested dissolution of the marriage, an order affirming her as a parent of the minor child, and orders regarding custody, parenting time and child support.

Read the full article here.

Posted by Logan Davis, Associate Editor, Wealth Strategies Journal.