LGBTQ RIGHTS/Legislature approves adoption rights for same-sex couples
Taipei, May 16 (CNA) Taiwan's Legislature on Tuesday passed legal amendments to allow same-sex married couples to jointly adopt children that neither spouse is related to.
The Legislature passed the amendments the Act for Implementation of Judicial Yuan Interpretation No. 748, the law that officially legalized same-sex marriage in Taiwan on May 24, 2019.
Since its enactment, however, many LGBTQ advocates have sought to amend Article 20 of the law, which states that in cases where "one party to the [same sex union] adopts the genetic child of the other party," the provisions concerning adoption in the Civil Code shall apply.
In practice, this wording has excluded those in same-sex marriages from adopting children who are not biological relations of theirs.
Last year, lawmakers from all four parties in the Legislature put forward proposals to amend the article, and after holding inter-party negotiations, passed a final version of the revisions on Tuesday.
The updated version of Article 20 states that the Civil Code's adoption provisions will apply in cases where "one party to the [same sex union] adopts the child of the other party, or where the couple jointly adopts a child."
Chien Chih-chieh (簡至潔), secretary-general of the Taiwan Alliance to Promote Civil Partnership Rights, said she was "overjoyed" at the law's passage, which will allow same-sex couples to build a "complete" family.
In the past, Chien noted, same-sex couples had to jump through a complex set of legal hoops to adopt, such as by divorcing, then having one party adopt a child, and then remarrying and raising the child together.
Even then, however, the other party in the marriage could not formally adopt the child, since the child was not genetically related to their partner, she said.
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Health and Welfare said Tuesday that with the amendments' passage, it would begin allowing same-sex couples to adopt "based on the current standard procedures."
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