The high court in London has just sided with a teenager, referred to as “PD,” in a case seeking to end all contact with the teen’s adoptive parents. PD, who identifies as a transgender boy, was adopted at the age of six, and was referred to the Tavistock gender clinic at the age of fourteen. Both parents struggled with PD’s decision to identify as transgender, and to PD’s “great annoyance and distress” would not use their child’s new chosen name. “The upshot is that he, at 16 years of age, has decided to completely disengage from family life with them,” said The Hon Mr Justice Keehan, who denied the parents’ request to receive quarterly updates regarding their child’s health and welfare. “Like the parents, I very much hope the time will come when a reconciliation is effected between PD and the parents. In my judgment, however, the surest way of seeking to secure that outcome is to respect PD’s current wishes and feelings.” PD is currently living with foster parents.
Court rules transgender teenager can cut off contact with adoptive parents _ Law _ The Guardian
The Fourth Court of Appeals has issued a new opinion in a case that is currently pending before the Texas Supreme Court. The case involves Dino Villarreal, a female who identifies as a man, who is suing Sandra Sandoval for parental rights of her two adopted children following the couple’s 2011 break-up. According to the COA, Villarreal did not have standing at the time the suit was filed (December 2013) because the Order Granting Change of Identity was not signed until January 3, 2014, after the suit was filed. In its new opinion, the COA states, “The Order Granting Change of Identity is a recognized form of proof of Dino’s identity and age for the purpose of obtaining a marriage license. It may also be sufficient to acknowledge Dino’s legal status as a man. However, we need not reach such a conclusion in this case because, even if considered a man from birth for legal purposes, Dino’s status as a man is not sufficient to confer statutory standing as, “a man whose paternity of the child is to be adjudicated.” TEX. FAM. CODE ANN. § 160.602(a)(3). If all that was required for standing was to be a man, then any man could maintain a suit to adjudicate parentage to any child. We do not believe that to be what the Texas Legislature intended.”
IN RE Sandra SANDOVAL
Kristen and Benjamin divorced in early 2012. Under the terms of their custody agreement, they shared legal custody of their two sons, one born in 2003 and one in 2005. Kristen, who lives in Anchorage, was to have primary physical custody of the children; Benjamin, who is in the Air Force and lives in California, was to have weekly Skype contact and the children were to travel to California for Christmas and summer visitations. Continue reading “Kristen L. v. Benjamin W. (USA)”
Michael Kantaras underwent surgery in 1987 to remove his breasts and ovaries and began taking hormones to transition to living as a man. He married a woman, Linda, and they later went through a contentious divorce and child custody case. In 2004, the Florida Supreme Court found that the marriage was null and void because Michael was still a woman and same-sex marriages were illegal in Florida at the time. The parties later settled.
Kantaras v. Kantaras
CNN Article on Settlement
Over the summer, an Australia boy obtained permission from a court to “feminize his body” because he feels like a girl. Such move is consistent with Family Court Chief Justice Diana Bryant’s concern that courts are not acting quickly enough to “help” these children. You can read how responsive the court is here, including the Dale Decision.
Transgender child, 15, gets court approval to feminise body _ The Courier-Mail
Family Court Chief Justice calls for rethink on how High Court handles cases involving transgender children – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)
California Senate Bill 731 would require children in foster care to be placed in out-of-home placements according to their gender identity, regardless of the gender or sex listed in their court or child welfare records. “Out-of-home placements” include placement with relatives, nonrelated extended family members, tribal members, and foster family homes, certified homes of foster family agencies, intensive treatment or multidimensional treatment foster care homes, group care placements, such as group homes and community treatment facilities, and residential treatment pursuant to Section 7950 of the Family Code.
The anti-lesbian National Center for Lesbian Rights supports this bill, which apparently affords no consideration to the girls housed in “foster family homes, certified homes of foster family agencies, intensive treatment or multidimensional treatment foster care homes, group care placements, such as group homes and community treatment facilities, and residential treatment pursuant to Section 7950 of the Family Code” with Boys who identifies as Girls.
Lee Detar is a seemingly mentally disturbed man who claims his wife and “the government” harassed him based on his gender identity. A federal court recently dismissed his lawsuit, noting it “is nothing more than an ad hominem attack on (his ex).” Mr. Detar seems to associate himself with the Father’s Rights Movement, which you can read about here, so this lawsuit likely stems from an underlying custody dispute.
Detar v. Metting
Victoria Smith enrolled her ten-year-old son in a new school as a girl under the name of Christine and told the boy’s father that she intended to subject the boy to hormonal therapy and surgery to alter his sex. The son was also attracted to stereotypical female clothing and the mother “treated him as a girl and encouraged him to act like a girl.” The trial court transferred custody of the two children to the father. On appeal, the court found that, since most of the facts regarding gender identity issues arose after the initial dissolution decree between Victoria and her ex-husband, the trial court properly concluded that there was a change of circumstances allowing reconsideration of the prior custody order. The trial court did not improperly interfere with the mother’s right to make medical decisions for her child. Further, the trial court considered how the change in custody would affect the younger child, and the trial court could have found that, since both boys seemed to get along well with each other and spent a considerable amount of time together, it was in the best interests of the children for the father to become the residential parent of both boys.
Smith v. Smith
THE BEST INTERESTS OF TRANSGENDER CHILDREN