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New family law issues for Rhode Island residents

As time changes and new possibilities are realized, new challenges can arise. This is especially true in the area of family law. In fact, Rhode Island residents may be interested to learn that individuals who are looking to build a family in a nontraditional way have more opportunities than ever.

Websites such as,, and others offer these opportunities. These websites allow people to meet, to become co-parents and to share in the emotional and financial pressures associated with raising a child without the romantic connection. These sites are in demand for individuals who want children, but fear raising a child alone through surrogacy, adoption or even artificial insemination.

Raising children is one of the most important responsibilities an individual can ever have. Even these co-parenting relationships, which can be carefully thought out and planned from the very beginning, can give way to family law issues, financial challenges and even a dispute. Despite having a detailed and comprehensive legal contract, when children are involved, a court will always make decisions based on the best interests of the child.

In society's new genre of family law, it is critical to make sure individuals understand their role and liability when it comes to their children. In the past, it may have seemed that courts favored the mother in cases involving physical custody. Today, courts in Rhode Island look at several issues when designating custody, including the role the parent has taken in raising the child. This includes the actual acts of caring for the child like bathing, conferences at school and whether the parent attends functions with the child. In these cases, each parent has the opportunity to demonstrate the ability to have physical custody of the child, whether solely or in a co-parenting arrangement.

Rhode Island residents who are interested in visiting a co-parenting site to explore new opportunities or investigating artificial insemination need to understand their rights and have them protected. The possibilities are endless and growing every day, but it is important to make sure someone with experience is there to help guide the new paths that are opening all over our country.

Source: The New York Times, "Making a Child, Minus the Couple," Abby Ellin, Feb. 8, 2013

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