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Same Sex Ex Denied Visitation

Second District Court of Appeal

The Second District Court of Appeal has ruled a woman doesn’t have visitation rights to the children she raised with a same-sex partner.

According to court records, Elizabeth Pasik and Susan Russell were raising the children together until they split up in 2011. The appellate court says granting Pasik visitation would violate Russell’s privacy rights as a parent.

But Lambda Legal, a civil rights group, says the court got it wrong. Senior Attorney Beth Littrell, says Russell gave up that right when she agreed to raise her children with a partner.

“Where a parent intentionally creates a family unit with another adult, then no constitutional violation takes place. And that should have been the decision of the court.”

Lambda is one of a handful of advocacy groups that filed friend of the court briefs. In his ruling, Chief Judge Craig Vilanti said he sympathizes with Pasik, but the Legislature needs to clarify the law.