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Monday, May 15, 2006

Ind. Decisions - AG asks Supreme Court to hear same-sex adoption question

From a press release just issued:

Indianapolis, IN – The Indiana attorney general’s office is asking the Indiana Supreme Court to hear the case of Infant Girl W. v. Morgan County Office of Family and Children which presents the issue of whether two people who are not married may jointly petition for adoption. Two trial judges have disagreed on the issue and the appellate court judges split 2-1 in their ruling last month. The attorney general’s office is asking the High Court to vacate the lower court’s decision permitting a joint adoption by an unmarried couple.

“The issue presented in this case concerns whether or not Indiana law has changed to now permit unmarried partners to adopt through a joint petition,” Carter stated. “There has been conflict among trial and appellate judges about whether two people can jointly adopt a child when they are not married. Given such a division thus far among five judges at two different levels of our courts; and given the fact that the state Supreme Court has not yet had the opportunity to interpret the most recent relevant enactment of the legislature, I find it proper to invite the High Court to be heard in this matter.”

The legislature amended the statute addressing adoptions by unmarried couples in 2005.

Carter noted that the Supreme Court may resolve the confusion between the decisions and opinions offered by the lower court judges. If the Supreme Court chooses to hear the case, it will likely extend the resolution of this particular case beyond the next legislative session.

“Such action by the court, though, could provide sound guidance for any later legislative discussion regarding this subject matter,” Carter added.

A list of earlier ILB entries may be found here.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on May 15, 2006 01:47 PM
Posted to Ind. App.Ct. Decisions