HB1162 (2020) Detail

Relative to adoption and parentage.


HB 1162 - AS AMENDED BY THE HOUSE

 

11Mar2020... 0438h

2020 SESSION

20-2202

05/04

 

HOUSE BILL 1162

 

AN ACT relative to adoption and parentage.

 

SPONSORS: Rep. Butler, Carr. 7; Rep. Mulligan, Graf. 12; Rep. St. John, Hills. 27; Rep. Hennessey, Graf. 1; Rep. Rice, Hills. 37; Rep. Berrien, Rock. 18; Sen. Reagan, Dist 17; Sen. Bradley, Dist 3; Sen. Watters, Dist 4; Sen. Hennessey, Dist 5

 

COMMITTEE: Children and Family Law

 

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ANALYSIS

 

This bill expands the categories of individuals eligible to adopt and clarifies adoption and parenting laws for unmarried couples who share parenting responsibilities and for families formed through assisted reproduction.

 

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Explanation: Matter added to current law appears in bold italics.

Matter removed from current law appears [in brackets and struckthrough.]

Matter which is either (a) all new or (b) repealed and reenacted appears in regular type.

11Mar2020... 0438h 20-2202

05/04

 

STATE OF NEW HAMPSHIRE

 

In the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand Twenty

 

AN ACT relative to adoption and parentage.

 

Be it Enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court convened:

 

1  Adoption; Who May Adopt.  Amend RSA 170-B:4 to read as follows:

170-B:4  Who May Adopt.  Any of the following adults may adopt:

I.  [Husband and wife together.] Two adults together.

II.  An unmarried adult.

III.  The unmarried parent of the adoptee.

IV.  A married [person] adult without that person's spouse joining as a petitioner, if the adoptee is not the petitioner's spouse; and if any one of the following circumstances apply:

(a)  The petitioner's spouse is a parent of the adoptee and assents to the adoption;

(b)  The petitioner and [his or her] the petitioner's spouse are legally separated;

(c)  The failure of the petitioner's spouse to join in the petition is excused by the court by reason of prolonged unexplained absence, unavailability, or circumstances constituting an unreasonable withholding of assent; or

(d)  The petitioner's spouse assents to the adoption and the adoptee is over the age of 18.

V.  An unmarried adult with the assent of at least one of the adoptee's parents and with the intention to share parenting responsibilities with one of the adoptee's parents.

VI.  A person or persons who are parents of a child conceived via assisted reproduction as defined in RSA 168-B:1, II for the purpose of confirming the legal relationship between child and parent.

2  New Paragraph; Adoption; Persons Not Required to Surrender Amended.  Amend RSA 170-B:7 by inserting after paragraph IV the following new paragraph:

IV-a.  Any parent of the adoptee with whom the petitioner and that parent intend to share parenting responsibilities.

3  Adoption; Consequences of Surrender.  Amend RSA 170-B:11, II to read as follows:

II.  Except in [the case of stepparent adoptions] cases where one parent will remain a parent, upon approval of a surrender of a minor executed by the parent, the court shall issue an order granting temporary care, custody, and control of the child to the prospective adoptive parents or where applicable, to the department or agency.  The temporary order shall impose upon the prospective adoptive parents or the department or agency, the responsibility for the support and medical and other care of the minor child.  The temporary order shall not be valid for longer than 6 months, unless otherwise ordered by the court, and, with the exception of adoptions in which the department or an agency is involved, shall cease upon the granting of the interlocutory decree of adoption.  In adoptions in which the department or an agency is involved, during the interlocutory period, the department or agency shall continue to have a legal relationship giving it responsibility for oversight of the support, medical, and other care of the minor child.

4  Adoption; Assessment.  Amend RSA 170-B:18, III to read as follows:

III.  Notwithstanding the provisions of RSA 170-B:18, I and II, the court may proceed to hearing and decree without an assessment where [the petitioner or petitioner's spouse is the birth parent of the minor child to be adopted] one of the adoptee's parents will remain a parent.  If the court has waived or limited the extent of an assessment pursuant to RSA 170-C:9, II, the court may order the petitioners to consult with a child-placing agency licensed pursuant to RSA 170-E to consider whether adoption is in the best interests of the minor child subject to the petition and themselves.

5  Adoption; Hearing.  Amend RSA 170-B:19, IV(a) to read as follows:

(a)  May issue a final decree of adoption, where [the petitioner or the petitioner's spouse is a birth parent of the minor adoptee] one of the adoptee's parents will remain a parent;

6  Adoption; Effect of Petition and Decree of Adoption; Inheritance.  Amend RSA 170-B:25 to read as follows:

170-B:25  Effect of Petition and Decree of Adoption; Inheritance.  

I.  Upon the issuance of the final decree of adoption, the adoptee shall be considered the child of the adopting parent or parents, entitled to the same rights and privileges and subject to the same duties and obligations as if such adoptee had been born of the adopting parent or parents.

II.  Until the issuance of the final decree of adoption, the adoptee shall be considered the child of such adoptee's birth parent or parents only with respect to inheritance rights or privileges; but, when a child is adopted by [a stepparent, the child's relationship to such child's birth parent who is married to the stepparent] an individual who intends to share parenting responsibilities with one of the adoptee's parents, the child's relationship to such parent shall in no way be altered by reason of the adoption.

III.  Notwithstanding any provision of law to the contrary, upon the issuance of a final decree of adoption in which only one spouse is petitioner and the adoptee is over the age of 18, the adopted child shall be the child of the adopting spouse.  Such child's relationship to the [birth] assenting parent [of the same sex as the non-adopting spouse] shall not be altered if the child and the [birth] parent so agree.  Such child shall no longer be deemed to be the child of such child's other birth or legal parent [of the same sex as the adopting spouse].

IV.  Until the issuance of a final decree of adoption, all reciprocal rights of inheritance between the adoptee and the adoptee's birth parents and their respective collateral or lineal relatives shall continue to exist.

V.  Upon the issuance of a final decree of adoption, all reciprocal rights of inheritance between the adoptee and the adoptive parents and their respective collateral or lineal relatives shall contemporaneously begin.

VI.  Nothing contained in this section shall limit in any way the right of any person to provide for the disposition of his or her property by will.  The rights of a child adopted after the making of a will by the adoptive parent or parents shall be the same as the rights of an after-born child.  When the adoptive parent is [a stepparent, married to a birth parent] an individual who intends to share parenting responsibilities with one of the adoptee's parents, nothing contained in this section shall affect the rights of inheritance between the child and such child's [birth] legal parent or their collateral or lineal relatives.  In the absence of specific language to the contrary, an adoptee shall be considered the same as a birth child, issue or heir of the body.

7  New Paragraph; Surrogacy; Parent-Child Relationship.  Amend RSA 168-B:2 by inserting after paragraph VI the following new paragraph:

VII.(a)  Any person who is a parent pursuant to RSA 168-B:2, II, without the assistance of a gestational carrier (as gestational carrier arrangements are governed by RSA 168-B:12), may petition the court for a parentage order declaring that the intended parent or parents are the sole parents of a child resulting from assisted reproduction.  Such a petition may be brought in the court in the county where the intended parent or parents reside, or where the resulting child is born or is expected to be born.  Such a petition may be brought either before, during, or subsequent to the pregnancy.  The court shall, within 30 days, grant the petition upon a finding that the child was conceived through assisted reproduction as defined in RSA 168-B:1, II, with the use of donor gametes or donor embryos, if applicable, and with the intent to parent.  Sworn affidavits demonstrating the same shall be sufficient to permit such a finding and a hearing shall not be required unless the court requires additional information which cannot reasonably be ascertained without a hearing.  Parentage orders issued under this paragraph shall conclusively establish or affirm, where applicable, the parent-child relationship.

(b)  Upon the request of any party, such parentage order shall direct that any record of birth and the certificate of birth name the intended parent or parents as the sole parent or parents of the resulting child.

(b)  Upon the request of any party, such parentage order shall direct that any record of birth and the certificate of birth name the intended parent or parents as the sole parent or parents of the resulting child and that such record of birth and certificate of birth shall not name the donor or donor's spouse or partner, if any, as the parent or parents of the resulting child.

(c)  All proceedings pursuant to this paragraph shall be closed to the public, and papers and records pertaining to such proceedings shall be subject to inspection only upon consent of all the parties or upon a showing of good cause supported by a court order.

8  Adoption; Definition of Birth Mother.  Amend RSA 170-B:2, IV to read as follows:

IV.  "Birth mother" means a woman who gestates an embryo conceived by natural or artificial insemination, in vitro fertilization, or preembryo transfer, or becomes a parent pursuant to [RSA 168-B:23, IV] RSA 168-B:12.

9  Effective Date.  This act shall take effect January 1, 2021.

Links

HB1162 at GenCourtMobile
HB1162 Discussion

Action Dates

Date Body Type
Feb. 4, 2020 House Hearing
Feb. 13, 2020 House Exec Session
House Floor Vote
March 11, 2020 House Floor Vote

Bill Text Revisions

HB1162 Revision: 8260 Date: March 11, 2020, 9:46 a.m.
HB1162 Revision: 6794 Date: Dec. 2, 2019, 10:43 a.m.

Docket

Date Status
Jan. 8, 2020 Introduced 01/08/2020 and referred to Children and Family Law HJ 1 P. 12
Feb. 4, 2020 Public Hearing: 02/04/2020 10:00 am LOB 206
Feb. 13, 2020 Executive Session: 02/13/2020 10:00 am LOB 206
Majority Committee Report: Ought to Pass with Amendment # 2020-0438h (Vote 16-1; RC)
March 11, 2020 Majority Committee Report: Ought to Pass with Amendment # 2020-0438h for 03/11/2020 (Vote 16-1; RC) HC 10 P. 33
Minority Committee Report: Inexpedient to Legislate
March 11, 2020 Amendment # 2020-0438h: AA VV 03/11/2020
March 11, 2020 Ought to Pass with Amendment 2020-0438h: MA VV 03/11/2020