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Parentage Orders - New York

parentage orders

Clear recognition as the legal parent of your child as soon as possible is crucial—whether you are a non-gestating LGBTQ partner, or you are someone who engaged in a surrogacy arrangement to create your family.  New York law (effective February 15, 2021) now allows for a pre-birth Judgment of Parentage to be obtained by many families and individuals engaged in surrogacy in New York, and vastly changes the landscape for non-gestating partners by allowing you to confirm your parental rights without the need for an intrusive and time-consuming second-parent adoption.


For the LGBTQ community especially, this is crucial because a birth certificate is simply not enough.  With the uncertain future as to the rights pertaining to this community, a Judgment of Parentage secures not only your ability to be named a legal parent of the child born to your gestating partner on their birth certificate,

but goes further and secures your parental rights and obligations towards that child regardless of whether you decide to move or travel to a less LGBTQ-friendly locale, and safeguards your parentage despite any potential changes in law that could affect your marital or other protections in the future.  This new New York law is gender and marriage neutral, so it is not contingent upon partners marrying.

For those availing themselves of recently-legalized gestational surrogacy in NY, a pre-birth Judgment of Parentage allows you to undertake the vital responsibilities of parenting without delay, and confirms your child’s clear parentage from the start, becoming effective at the moment of birth.


Benefits include the birthing hospital being made clearly aware of your parentage early-on, and consequently allows your child to be released to your care upon discharge, should ensure that hospital personnel talk to you rather than to the surrogate as to the child’s wellness necessary medical decisions and at birth, allows you to obtain medical insurance coverage and medical treatment for your child without consent from the surrogate, allows you to obtain a passport for your child to travel, and allows you to more easily obtain relevant family leave benefits from your employer without undue complication, among other things. 

Young Family

The Law Office of Jennifer P. Maas, PLLC is focused on working to help with this process.  We will draft a petition on your behalf, compile and attach necessary exhibits, and file a parentage proceeding in the New York courts—typically during the second trimester of a pregnancy for an anticipated pre-birth order.  If a pre-birth order is not possible due to eligibility requirements, we will work with you to file a parentage proceeding as soon as practicable to have your parental rights confirmed as quickly as possible, so that your child’s birth certificate (if already issued) can then be amended to reflect your parentage. 


One or more court appearances may be required to obtain the parentage order, during which time Jennifer P. Maas will be there by your side to represent you—drawing on her nearly twenty years of experience in appearing before countless judges throughout the Supreme, Civil and Family Courts in the State of New York. 

Whether a single Intended Parent, or a married or unmarried heterosexual or LGBTQ couple, let the Law Office of Jennifer P. Maas, PLLC advocate for you and your legal parentage, so that you can focus your attention on other things and enjoy being a parent to your child.

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