new rules

CT Supremes Rule: Gay Parents Don’t Have To Adopt Their Own Children

Congratulations to Anthony and Shawn Raftopol, who at last are both considered the legal parents of their now-two-year-old twin sons Sebastiann and Lukas. When the boys were born, the State of Connecticut allowed only Anthony, the biological father, to be given full parental rights; in order for Shawn to assume them and be named on the boys’ birth certificates, he would need to go through a second-parent adoption. But the Connecticut Supreme Court ruled this week that because the men had a surrogate agreement with the biological mother, Anthony is indeed due full parental rights, and the adoption procedure is unnecessary. And so ends a two-year battle where the couple, who live in Holland and sometimes commute to the U.S. for work, no longer have to “traffic” their children across international borders. Says (a jubilated, we’re guessing) Anthony: “The state is, for the first time, recognizing the nature of the relationships that are being created thought surrogacy arrangements in general and IVF [in-vitro fertilization] in particular. That affects not just who can be a parent but the validity and enforceability of surrogacy. Connecticut has set the stage for other states and legislatures — the sky hasn’t fallen. Times are changing and we need to bring the family code out of the 19th century.” Of course, the matter isn’t entirely settled: The court ruling applies only to children born to a surrogate who has no genetic link to the offspring. That was the case with the Raftopols, who used a donor egg and a surrogate mother to give them two beautiful children. [photo: not of the Raftopols twins]