Advocates Fighting to Change Parental Rights Laws
In a small number of states, women who become pregnant following a rape have to deal with the parental rights of their rapist, causing them to have to fight for custody and adoption decisions with their attacker.
Maryland is one of these states, having failed to pass legislation nine times in order to take away the parental rights of attackers. The state is now considering a bill that would allow rape survivors to petition the removal of these parental rights, even if no conviction has been established. Currently, in order for parental rights to be removed a felony rape conviction is required.
For the tenth year in a row, a bill has been brought forth for the consideration of a House committee. Adoption services, child and victim advocates, and domestic abuse advocates are fighting for the bill. They are pushing to pass the bill smoothly, without adding amendments that could slow its success.
The bill has received some pushback from some members of the Senate, who voiced concern that the bill could leave too much leeway for parental rights, and could end in removing child/parent relationships that were already established. The bill has the support of the presiding officers and governor, however, and it is being considered an issue with bipartisan agreement.
If you need assistance settling a child custody agreement in Howard County, MD, reach out to our team today. We can assist you in finding the best steps to take to determine the custody of your children, as your marriage comes to an end.