*Note, since this post was published, North Carolina laws on statutory construction were amended. Effective July 12, 2017, the terms “husband and wife” and other terms suggesting a lawful marriage must be construed to include any two individuals who are then lawfully married to each other. See S.L. 2017-102, sec. 35 creating G.S. 12-3(16). This impacts the analysis of G.S. 49A-1, where it does apply to a mother and her spouse. For a further discussion, see New Legislation Acknowledges Same-Sex Marriage, posted by our colleague Cheryl Howell on Aug. 8, 2017.
Since our blog post, Same-Sex Marriage and Adoptions of a Minor by a Stepparent, we have received several inquiries about the role of a sperm donor in an adoption proceeding. Although General Synod of the United Church of Christ v. Resinger, 12 F. Supp. 3d 790 (W.D.N.C. 2014) and Fisher-Borne v. Smith, 14 F.Supp. 3d 695 (M.D.N.C. 2014) held NC’s ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional, they did not specifically address parentage when a child is conceived or born during a same-sex marriage. And, although artificial reproductive technology has advanced in the last 20 years, the laws in NC have not fully addressed these advances and how they impact parentage. Continue Reading