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Rare Custody ruling Goes to Three Parents

The Recorder Reports: The California Court of Appeal has ruled that one little girl has two legal fathers and a mother, and the three of them are going to have to parent her together.

The decision takes on the traditional common law presumption that, when a child is born to a married woman, the husband is the legal father. The court marries that concept with California law, which allows for some situations where a child can have three legal parents. And this is one, the justices ruled.

The child, now 6, was born in 2012 to a married woman who had an affair with a co-worker, according to an opinion released Tuesday and signed by Third District Justice Elena Duarte, with Justices Harry Hull Jr. and William Murray Jr. concurring.

None of the parents are named, nor is the child. The parents are identified by initials in the record.

The mother at first kept the father’s real identity from her employer and her husband, according to Duarte. That’s why the father—the mother’s co-worker—didn’t ask for paternity leave. The mother had told him she and her husband were separated, but they weren’t. READ MORE AT THE RECORDER HERE

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