Later this month, the Manhattan Supreme Court will decide the fate of a child born last July to an unmarried, heterosexual couple. In the interim, the baby is stuck in foster care and under the purview of Child Protective Services.
How Could This Happen?
Jonathan Sporn, a 54-year-old pharmaceuticals executive, began co-habiting with his partner, Leann Leutner, a lawyer, in 2010. Both had been previously divorced, weren't in a hurry to marry again, but wanted to start a family. They sought the assistance of an anonymous sperm donor and last July, Leutner gave birth to a healthy boy, Lincoln Amory Aurelian Sporn Leutner.
On January 1, 2013, the mother, who had struggled with postpartum depression, committed suicide. Not recognizing Sporn as the father due to the couple's unmarried status, Child Protective Services stepped in and placed the baby in foster care.
Now Sporn and Leutner's sister, Susan Sylvester, are battling for custody of little Lincoln. The court has visited both homes and deemed them both appropriate for the child.
According to the law, Sporn isn't a parent because he never married Leutner and he didn't father the child. In addition, Sporn failed to immediately take steps to adopt Lincoln following his birth.
Case Bears Similarities to Challenges Gay Parents Face
Continue reading "Child Custody Disputes Among Unmarried Heterosexual and Gay Unmarried Couples Are Similar" »