NSW Bill to amend numerous Acts
NSW Attorney-General John Hatzistergos has now put the bill before the Parliament to allow lesbian couples to both be recognised as parents on the their child’s birth certificates.
The Miscellaneous Acts (Same Sex relationships)Bill 2008 also amends numerous other bills, to remove discrimination in NSW law so that there is a clear defintion of “spouse” which includes same sex couples and de facto couples.
Lesbian parenting amendments
In an Australian first, the Bill, if passed, will contain the the following presumption:
When a woman who is in a de facto relationship with another woman has undergone a fertilisation procedure as a result of which she becomes pregnant:
(a) the other woman is presumed to be a parent of any child born as a result of the pregnancy, but only if the other woman consented to the procedure, and
(b) the woman who has become pregnant is presumed to be the mother of any child born as a result of the pregnancy even if she did not provide the ovum used in the procedure.
The key term, of course, is “fertilisation procedure”. Having sex with a man will still result in his being presumed to be the father.
The amendments are retrospective to when the child was born, although there are exceptions,including for wills executed before commencement.
Changes to other Acts
All up 55 pieces of legislation or regulation are altered so that there is a consistent definition of “spouse”. This includes the following legislation:
-Charles Sturt University By-Law
-Co-operative Housing and Starr-Bowkett Societies Act
-Greyhound and Harness Racing Administration Act
-Industrial Relations Act
-Irrigation Areas (Reduction of Rents) Act
-Sydney Cricket and Sports Ground Act
-Water Industry Competition Act