Nevada Is One of the Most Progressive LGBTQ Parenting States in the Nation

Nevada has a new law that allows more than two people to hold parenting rights through adoption. According to proponents, Assembly Bill 115 recognizes the transformation of family structure as social diversity takes center stage and assisted reproductive technology becomes common. The bill, coupled with the fact that the rights of gay couples to marry are enshrined in the constitution, makes Nevada one of the most progressive LGBTQ parenting states in the nation.

Families Redefined

Informal parenting, adoption, and widespread usage of reproductive technologies have introduced new meanings to families. Gay couples who obtain sperm or an egg from a friend sometimes wish to have all three parties added to certificates. Opposite sex couples who split up and remarry may want to have a stepparent adopt without either biological parent giving up their parental rights.

Executive Director Andre Wade of an LGBTQ advocacy group called Silver State Equality says that Nevada is among the 11 states with a greater proportion of gay couples that surpasses the national average. Proponents say Assembly Bill 115, which became effective on June 08, 2021, will provide children with more emotional and financial support.

Recognizing Multiple Parentage

Child custody attorney Kimberly M. Surratt of Surratt Law in Reno, NV lobbied Assembly Bill 115 at the legislature and was a primary proponent to testify in support of it. The bill was passed in June of 2021 and became effective immediately. The legislation approves multiparent adoptions, allowing nontraditional families more legal recognition. Any individual seeking to be named as a parent must obtain permission from existing legal parents. Since the law doesn’t restrict the number of people who could be recognized as parents, it’s up to the existing legal parents to put a “common sense limit” in place.

LGBTQ Families and Child Custody Issues

In the event of an LGBTQ family divorce, same-sex parents will have to go through a child-custody process that’s akin to the process opposite-sex parents face. The parents will require a child custody attorney who is conversant with LGBTQ family laws to help them come up with the best parenting time arrangement.

Kimberly Surratt served for eight years on the executive council and has been the vice chair and then chair of the State Bar of Nevada Family Law Section. In addition, she is the President-Elect of the Nevada Justice Association and the chair of the domestic lobbying committee. She has lobbied with the Nevada Justice Association since 2004.

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