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Connecticut Parentage Act
About the Connecticut Parentage Act (CPA)
The Connecticut Parentage Act (CPA) is pending state legislation that will ensure that all Connecticut children — regardless of the circumstances of their birth or the marital status, gender, or sexual orientation of their parents — have equal access to the security of a legal parent-child relationship.
Why is the Connecticut Parentage Act Needed?
Connecticut is the only New England state without protections or paths to parentage for non-biological parents to establish their legal relationship with their children. This means the legal relationship between many of the state’s LGBTQ parents and their children is insecure, which leaves children vulnerable. The CPA will fill gaps in existing law and ensure equal access to legal parentage for all children, including those with unmarried, same-sex, or nonbiological parents. Professor Douglas NeJaime and a group of Yale Law School students have been working to pass the Connecticut Parentage Act CPA since 2019.
Watch a short video about the Connecticut Parentage Act:
There are several ways to support passage of the CPA to ensure Connecticut protects all children and families:
Write a Letter to Your Legislators in Support of the CPA
Learn how and see a sample letter you can send to your State Senator and Representative in support of the Connecticut Parentage Act.
Submit Written Testimony
Learn how to submit official testimony in support of the Connecticut Parentage Act and find a template for written testimony that you may use and adapt to voice your reasons for supporting the CPA.
Share your story
When families who have been impacted by the inability to secure their legal parent-child relationships tell their stories, people understand the clear importance of passing the CPA.
If you have a story about how current gaps in the law have put your family at risk, we invite you to complete this form. Someone from the We Care Coalition will be in touch to talk with you soon. All information will be kept confidential until we talk with you about how you’d like to share your story.
Join the CPA mailing list
Learn about opportunities to provide testimony, contact your legislators, attend coalition meetings and more.
Follow the We Care Coalition on social media:
Stories in the Press About Parentage and the CPA
Connecticut Post op/ed by Douglas NeJaime and Patience Crozier: Connecticut Can Take a Stand for Inequality
Read more about the efforts of Yale Law School students to pass the Connecticut Parentage Act
WSHU: Listen to a story about testimony in favor of the CPA before the state judiciary committee
The Hartford Courant: An op/ed by Connecticut state representative Jeff Currey about the CPA.
The CT Mirror: An op/ed by Malina Simard-Halm ’23 titled “Connecticut’s parentage law discriminates against families like mine. It’s time for change.”
Following the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2015 landmark decision in Obergefell v. Hodges, which affirmed the fundamental right to marry for same-sex couples, the Uniform Law Commission promulgated the 2017 Uniform Parentage Act (UPA) to update prior UPA provisions and integrate Obergefell’s core holding. The CPA’s proposed reforms build on the 2017 UPA as well as the CT Supreme Court’s landmark 2008 decision in Kerrigan v. Commissioner of Public Health — which recognized the constitutional right to marry for all CT families — by ensuring Connecticut law treats all parents and their children with equal dignity and respect. The law will also institute much-needed protections for children born through assisted reproduction and all parties involved in the surrogacy process.
Professor Douglas NeJaime