Gay NJ Man May Relocate to Gay Unfriendly State With Adopted Child Against Other Parent’s Objections
- November 4, 2012
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In the recent case of A.G. v. R.R, (BER-FM-02-2258-09) the Bergen County Court ruled that a parent of primary residence with good intentions cannot be barred from relocating with the child to a state hostile to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) marriage without a showing of prejudice to the rights of the other parent. In A.G. v. R.R., the child was adopted while the parties were living in New Jersey, although they never entered into a civil union or domestic partnership. Upon separation, the parties entered into an agreement affording primary custody to A.G. and permitted him to relocate with the child from New Jersey to New York so that A.G. could pursue lucrative job opportunities. Following an injury rendering A.G. unable to perform the theater jobs for which he was well paid in New York, he received a lucrative job offer from an Atlanta, Georgia television production company and filed a Motion in the New Jersey Superior Court, Family Part, to relocate the child to Atlanta. R.R. opposed the Motion on the grounds that a 2004 amendment to the Georgia Constitution prohibits same-sex marriage and recognition of marriages of same-sex couples performed in other states. Judge Thurber held that the Full Faith and Credit Clause of the United States Constitution would require Georgia to uphold custody and parenting time orders issued by the New Jersey Courts. Judge Thurber rationalized that, if Georgia is hostile to the parental rights of R.R., he has a judicial remedy in the New Jersey Courts which have an interest in seeing their orders upheld. The Judge was careful to note that there was no example of a Georgia court refusing to recognize the rights of out-of-state adoptive parents. If you or your former partner are seeking to relocate a child against the wishes of the other parent, you should consult an experienced family law attorney immediately in order to protect your rights. For more information on adoption, child support, custody, parenting time/visitation, dissolution of a civil union, domestic partnership or marriage, modifications, alimony, palimony or other family law matters in New Jersey visit HeatherDarlingLawyer.com. This blog is for informational purposes only and in no way intended to replace the advice of an attorney regarding your specific matter.