The State of Kansas, which does not recognize same-sex unions, is pursuing child support from the man who donated sperm to a lesbian couple because the child’s mother is seeking financial aid. Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback's administration is seeking to pass the cost of that child support on to the sperm donor of the lesbian couple involved. According to the Huffington Post’s Dec. 30 report, William Marotta, a Topeka mechanic, may have to pay child support for a child he signed away all his parental rights to.
The story begins when Marotta answered a Craigslist ad for a sperm donor. Angela Bauer and Jennifer Schreiner, a lesbian couple, placed the ad in March 2009. As part of the agreement between the parties, Marotta gave up his rights and his financial obligations toward any forthcoming child.
The Kansas Department of Children and Families sees it differently though and has filed a claim against Marotta. When Schreiner and Bauer sought financial aid due to an illness that Bauer unable to support her family, welfare officials demanded the name of the “father” before aid could be given.
Together Schreiner and Bauer have eight children. Though the couple is no longer together, they still co-parent are very close. Because the state does not recognize same-sex unions, Bauer cannot be made to pay the child support. With Bauer unable to work, Schreiner turned to financial aid to support her family.
Even though the couple has a signed agreement with Marotta, the state is arguing the validity of the agreement because a doctor did not handle the artificial insemination as required by state law. Hannah Schroller, Marotta’s attorney is attempting to have the case dismissed. Arguments will be heard in state court next month.
Most states protect sperm donors with laws that govern these types of situations. Still, there is one case in Vermont
According to NBC News, there have been several other states involved in cases of child support and sperm donors. While most states have laws in place that protect sperm donors, there has been at least one case in Vermont, Massachusetts, and New York in which the sperm donors have been forced to make child support payments.
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