Arizona Supreme Court to rule on same-sex child parental rights

Suzan McLaughlin wants the state of Arizona to recognize her rights as a mother./ MARI HERRERAS

By Katie Campbell | Arizona Capitol Times

The Arizona Supreme Court has agreed to review the case of a same-sex spouse who was granted parental rights over her ex-wife’s biological child.

In October, the Arizona Court of Appeals ruled Suzan McLaughlin was entitled to the same parental rights as if she were a man after her wife Kimberly McLaughlin became pregnant through artificial insemination and gave birth to a son.

The couple had entered into a joint parenting agreement and declared they were equal parents in mirrored wills. But when their son was nearly 2, Kimberly McLaughlin moved out of their home, taking the boy with her and cutting off contact with Suzan McLaughlin.

She filed for divorce and parenting time, and a trial judge cleared the case to proceed. But Kimberly McLaughlin appealed, arguing Suzan McLaughlin was not a “parent” as defined by state law.

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