Family Law Advice and Possible Updates to Family Law in California (Part Two)

California Family Law LibraryLooking for family law advice? In our previous blog post, we discussed some proposed legislation that would change the California Family Code to better reflect and include the families within our state that involve same-sex marriages. Other family law issues have come into the public light in recent years that have prompted other proposed changes in California’s family laws. The following are two more proposed updates in state law, and the cases that inspired those proposals.

Laws Regarding Sperm Donors

Actor Jason Patric was involved in a very public California family law case involving questions of custody regarding his four year-old son. Patric agreed to help Danielle Schrieber, a former girlfriend, conceive a child, in order that she would not need to seek an anonymous sperm donor at a sperm bank. Patric believed he could maintain a relationship with the child and reserve other parental rights, especially following the rekindling of his relationship with Schrieber. When the romantic relationship soured, Schrieber refused to allow Patric contact with their son, claiming Patric was abusive, and citing a California law that limits the rights of sperm donors with regard to the resulting child.

Regardless of whether or not the Patric case will result with his receiving parental rights, some legislators believe this case highlights a need for greater legal specification regarding sperm donor rights. Proposed law AB2344 provides a form that would clarify the intended role of a sperm donor or other individual who assists with reproduction in the life of the resulting child. Such a form will hopefully help avoid disputes in cases such as Patric’s.

Laws Regarding Remarriage and Parental Care

Another proposed change in the law stems from the lengthy, public court battle between the children of the late radio personality Casey Kasem and his second wife. Allegedly, Kasem’s second wife refused to allow the children to visit with their sick father or give any say in his medical treatment or care. By the time Kasem passed away, the children spent hundreds of thousands of dollars in legal fees, and were ultimately allowed only limited visitation with their father.

Proposed bill AB2034 would alter the law to allow the children of an elder or dependent adult to petition the court for an injunction in order to prevent a new spouse or family member from isolating the adult from close relatives. This would give adult children a new avenue to gain access to ailing parents in cases where a new spouse objects to such visitation without requiring lengthy and costly court battles.

At Beck Law, PC, we understand the ever-changing face of the modern family. California in particular appears progressive in updating laws to fully address all types of family-related issues that may arise. Hopefully, once the law is clarified on some of these issues, it will help family members avoid the need to spend years engaged in costly court battles. If you have any questions regarding potential updates in family laws, and how they may affect you, do not hesitate to contact our office for help today.

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