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It’s a biological impossibility but legally it’s doable in Florida: A child can have three parents. A recent case in California is an excellent example of this kind of family structure. A 16-year-old who — calls her parents Dad, Mom and Mama — was born to two mothers who asked a male friend to be the father.

Having three parents is a new trend that’s gaining traction with some courts around the nation. The family structure is being referred to as “tri-parenting.” In the California case, the non-biological mother was relieved when the family court finally granted her parental status. The woman said that she’s happy to call her daughter her own, legally.

Florida is one of an estimated 11 states that allow tri-parenting. In 2013, a judge allowed three parents to place their names on the birth certificate of a baby girl in Miami. The girl was the child of gay female couple. At first, the couple did not want to include the biological father in their parenting plan, and they became embroiled in a court battle. Eventually, they agreed to put three parents on the birth records and provided the man with weekly visitations.

Advocates of tri-parenting say that the model is merely a reflection of what’s happening in the world right now. With more acceptance of same-sex couples, same-sex spouses and same-sex parents — the both socially and legally — advocates believe it’s only natural for the tri-parenting model to emerge.

Do you want to be the third parent of a child? Is someone asking to be the third parent of your child? Especially because this issue is so new — and experimental — Florida parents may want to discuss their tri-parenting situations with a qualified child custody law attorney.

Source: News Talk Florida, “Florida among many states where courts allow 3 parents of 1 child,” June 19, 2017