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In re Adoption of K.R.S.-Opinion

In re Adoption of K.R.S.-Opinion

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Published by Equality Case Files
Opinion of Alabama Court of Civil Appeals in the case "In re Adoption of K.R.S."
Opinion of Alabama Court of Civil Appeals in the case "In re Adoption of K.R.S."

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Published by: Equality Case Files on Oct 18, 2012
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12/08/2013

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SOuth9ID
R e p a r t 9 ~ :
ALABAMA
COURT
OF
CIVIL
APPEALS
O C ~ O B E R
TERM,
2012-2013
2110122
In
rQ
Adoption
of
X.R.S.
Appealfrom
Mobil.
Probate
Court
(!'Io.
2012-0680)
THOMPSON,
Pre5iding
Judge.
On
December
29,
2011,
C.D.S.
filed
a
petition
in
the
MobilePr.obate
Court
("theprobate
cou:rt
")
seeking
to
adopt
K ~ R . S .
("the
child")
undl!!!r
§
26-10A-27.
Ala.
Code
1975,
a
part
of
the
Alabama
Adoption
Code.
§
26-10A-l
et
s e q ~ ,
Ala.
Code
1975.
The
probate
court
requested
that
C.D.S.
file
a
brief
setting
forth
the
applicable
law,
and
it
later
conducted
a
 
2110722
hearing.
On
April
6,
2012,
the
probate
court
entered
a
judgment
denying
C.D.S.
IS
request
thet
she
be
allowed
to
adopt
the
chtld.
In
reaching
its
judgment,
theprobate
court
determined
that,
under
applicable
law,
C.D.S.
was
not
a·····
"spouse"
of
the
child
I
S
mother
such
that
she
couldadopt
the
child
pursuant
to
S
26-10A-27.
C.O.S.
timely
appealed.
On
appeal,
C.D.S.
contends
that
the
probate
courterredin
denying
her
adoption
petition.
The
right
of
adoption
is
created
by
statute,
and
it
is
in
d e ~ o 9 a t i o n
ofthe
common
law.
Ex
parte
R.W.,835
So.2d186,
190
(Ala.
2002).In
this
case,
there
are
no
factualissues;
because
only
a
legalissue
is
implicated,
this
c o u ~ t
must
review
the
probate
court's
judgment
denovo.
Hollis
v.
Forrester,
914
So.
2d
852,
854
(Ala.
Civ.
App.
2004).
C.D.S.,
B
woman,
presented
evidence
indicating
that,
in
2008,
she
and
the
child's
mother
were
married
in
California.
C.
D.
S.
argues
that
:she
1s
the
spouse
of
the
child
r
smother
."
and,
t h Q r e f o ~ e ,
that
she
may
adopt
the
child
under
S
26-10A-27,
which
provides
that,
under
certain
conditions,
"fa}
ny
person
may
adopt
his
orher
spouse
I
sChild."
The
child's
2
 
,
2110722
mother
consented
to
C.D.S.
IS
a.doption
of
the
child
in
her
capacity
as
themother's
spouse.)
The
State
of
Alabama
does
not
recognize
same-sex
marriages.
Ala.
Canst.
Of
1901,
Art.
If
~
36.03:
~
30-1-19,
Ala.
code
1975.
Section
30-1-19,
known
as
the
"Alabama
Marriage
Protection
Act,"
provides
that
"[m}arriage
is
inherently
a
unique
relationship
between
a
man
and
awoman"
and
that
"[aJmarriage
contracted
between
individuals
of
the
same
sex
is
invalid
in
thi.s
state."
~
30-1-19
(b)
In
addition,
same-sex
marriages
that
are
valid
in
other
states
are
not
recognized
in
Alabama.
S
30-1-19
(e)
("The
State
of
Alabama
shall
notrecognizeas
valid
any
marriageof
parties
Of
the
same
sex
that
occurr.ed
or
was
alleged
to
have
occurred
as
!I
result
of
the
law
of
any
jurisdiction
regardless
of
whether
amarr.i.age
lic;:ense
was
issued.").
lThe
mother
did
notconsent
to
relinquish
her
own
parental
rights
to
the
child
so
that
C.D.S.
cOUld
adopt
the
child
under
any
other
section
Of
the
Alabama
Adoption
Code.
Therefore,
C.D.S.
couldproceedonly
under
§
26-10A-27.
See
§
26-10A
29(b),
Ala.
Code
1975
("Upon
the
final
decreeofadoption,
the
natural
parents
af
the
~ d o p t e e ,
except
far
a
natural
parent
who
is
the
§pouse
of
the
adopting
parente,)
are
~ e l i e v e d
of
all
parental
responsibility
for
the
adoptee
and
will
have
no
parental
rights
over
theadoptee."
(emphasis
added)).
3

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