A Taiwanese court allowed a married gay man to legally adopt his husband’s non-biological child in a historic case.
On 25 December 2021, a family court approved an appeal allowing a same-sex partner to adopt the child adopted by his husband prior to their marriage.
Wang Chen-wei (王振圍) and Chen Chun-ju (陳俊儒), the child’s adopted parents, were told it is in the best interests of their child by the court in the ruling.
According to Taipei Times, this marks the first time a same-sex couple has been permitted to adopt a child that neither have biological relation to in Taiwan.
Celebrating on Facebook, Wang said: “Finally, the issue of Joujou’s parental rights has come to an end.”
Despite LGBTQ+ activists in Taiwan hailing the historic court decision, it appears that the ruling does not offer a general precedent for other gay couples seeking a similar outcome.
“We will continue to fight. The key is having the law revised,” Wang continued. “If our family wants to adopt another child, will we have to go through the same process again and gamble on which judicial affairs officer we get? Or will the law have been amended so it won’t be so hard for everybody?”
Although same-sex marriage has been legal in the country since 2019, gay couples still face an array of restrictions that others do not.
The Act for Implementation of Judicial Yuan Interpretation No. 748, the legislation legalising gay marriage, fails to offer clarigication on same-sex adoption of children who are not related to either parent by blood – instead only mentoioning “the genetic child of the other party”.
Speaking to AFP, Jennifer Lu, executive director of the Taiwan Equality Campaign, said: “We hope the rulings serve as a reminder to government officials and lawmakers that the current unfair legal conditions need to be changed.”
The group, which helped Wang and Chen, said two other couples had their adoption requests rejected and called for more clarity on adoption rights in law.