If you are in a gay relationship and want to have children, think about the legal issues involved. If you are the birth parent and there is no genetic or legal relationship with your partner, you have all the rights and decision making regarding your children. You make all medical and education decisions and are financially responsible for the children. But your partner talked to some attorney and wants to you to sign a Co-parenting Agreement. Is that valid? Can I really contract for 18 years for my girlfriend to be a parent when she is not legally any parent to my kids? What if I break up with her? What if she is a lousy parent? What if I don’t think she is good to my kids? What about my rights? Can I change my mind? These are all great questions to ask. What if she spends time with them ? Arizona law recognizes third party rights to children under certain circumstances, even if you are not related to them. How do I make sure that does not happen to my kids? As long as you do not let other adults step into the shoes as a parent to your children, they cannot claim third party parent rights. To be safe, perhaps a contract outside the statues is not a very good idea. Why sign a contract that you do not have to sign and one that gives you no benefits? I would think very long about such a contract and seek an attorney with experience in this area who can tell you all the legal ramifications of such a contract.
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