Press Statement from Frances Fitzgerald MEP
Sunday 7th December 2022
Frances Fitzgerald welcomes EU proposals to recognise same-sex parental rights in all Member States
Dublin MEP Frances Fitzgerald has welcomed today’s proposal by the European Commission to ensure that the status of parenthood is automatically recognised equally in all EU member states. The proposal would provide legal clarity for all types of families, including rainbow families, that find themselves in a cross-border situation within the EU, be it because they move from one Member State to another to travel or reside, or because they have family members or property in another Member State.
Currently, Member States have varying national laws on the recognition of parenthood, with some states recognising the parenthood of same-sex parents and others not doing so. The proposed law, if implemented, would ensure that parents, including same-sex parents, and their children in one Member State would automatically have their legal rights and identity recognised in any other Member State should they move there.
Frances Fitzgerald MEP said, “Today’s announcement is about recognising the dignity and civil rights of everybody equally. Same-sex parents in Ireland and across the EU deserve the comfort and security of knowing that their status and rights as parents as well as the identity of their children, will be recognised in all 27 EU Member States. The EU offers freedom of movement to all citizens but without a common recognition of rights, then this freedom is devalued.
“I strongly welcome the proposal by the European Commission today and I hope that it received the full unanimous support of all Member States as required. While decisions on family law will remain in the hands of Member States, it is important that parents are not disadvantaged across the EU. Automatic mutual recognition is already the case when it comes to succession law, it makes perfect sense that it would also apply to the recognition of parenthood.
“Today’s proposal also includes a plan to create a European Certificate of Parenthood which children can request from their member state and use to prove parenthood in another member state.
“EU citizens can live and work in different EU countries. They travel, found businesses, purchase houses, start families. However, currently, when a rainbow family finds itself in a cross-border situation, it might lose the rights derived from parenthood under national law. This non-recognition of parenthood puts the fundamental rights of children at risk, including their right to an identity, to non-discrimination, and to private, family life. It is high time this matter was addressed.”