South Yorkshire woman calls for unmarried same-sex couples to be allowed joined custody

A South Yorkshire woman has called for the government to allow unmarried same-sex or LGBTQ+ couples to be on a child's birth certificate, as a way to prevent issues surrounding custody arrangements in case of separation.

Friday, 7th May 2021, 2:03 pm

In an online petition that was launched recently, 23-year-old Chloe Bent from Waverley, Rotherham said the existing laws are "unfair" as couples have to be married in order to be on the birth certificate if the child is not conceived through a UK-registered clinic.

She said: "The reason I started this petition is because it is really close to my heart. If I want to have more kids in the future, then it is probably going to cost me a fortune - whether I have to get married or use a clinic.

"Then my sister, whose son is 11 this year - she has changed his first nappy, put on his outfit, cut his cord and did everything and she was the best parent as she could be.

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Chloe Bent.

"And then when he was 7, she was stopped from seeing him and she hasn't got a leg to stand on because she was not on the birth certificate and she was not married and didn't go to the clinic.”

According to the government website, same-sex partners who are not civil partners, the second parent can get parental responsibility by either applying for parental responsibility, if a parental agreement was made.

It can also be done by becoming a civil partner of the other parent and making a parental responsibility agreement or jointly registering the birth.

Chloe said she intends to take the matter to Parliament although she admits she has a long way to go with the petition as she only has 50 supporters so far.

Chloe Bent (left) and her partner.

"I really do want to take it to Parliament but to get the government to notice, you have to get 10,000 signatures and for it to go to Parliament, I am going to need 100,000 signatures," she said.

A supporter who wrote in the online petition said: “All parents deserve an equal opportunity. Whether they are married or not. Straight couples get this luxury - gay couples should too.”

To sign the petition, please go here.