Fathers have burden heavier than mothers

Posted on October 31, 2017   // 0 Comments  

same-sex marriage - fathers

Image Source: frontpagemag.com

Most societies have relegated to the past issues on gender inequality. The trend to recognize same-sex marriages is picking up speed. Women are better accepted as co-equal with men in areas of employment, world leadership and breadwinning.

It would seem that biological differences between a male and a female are not matters of consideration within the context of equal protection of the law. It would seem that way, but it’s not an absolute rule.

Gender differences still matter in formulating laws that involve the preservation of certain governmental interests. For example, under Philippine law, the mother is given preference over the father to have custody of an illegitimate girl before she reaches age 7 unless she (mother) is proven unfit to take care of the young child.

In the United States, immigration rules impose heavier burden on a U.S. citizen- father of an illegitimate child to prove paternity than on U.S. citizen-mother to prove the mother-child relationship.

In petitioning for an illegitimate child to come to and live in the U.S., the U.S. citizen mother only has to show as evidence by the birth certificate of the child. If it is the father who petitions for his child born out of wedlock (illegitimate), the birth certificate showing acknowledgment of his paternity is not enough. He has to establish proof of his paternity by additional and equally important means.

The law provides that “emotional and/or financial ties or a genuine concern and interest by the father for the child’s support, instruction and general welfare must be shown (8 CFR 204.2(d) (2) [Immigration and Nationality Act, as amended]).” A father petitioning his child to live in the United States must show that he is a father not just in name but in deed.

If it is true that he is the father, he should be able to show that he cares for his child by communicating with the kid, being concerned about his/her welfare, sending/giving her financial support in hi/her tender years (up to age 18) or if there was an opportunity to live with the child and personally be a parent to the child, then proof such as income tax return records, school and medical/insurance coverage records, may well support the parent-child petition.

When the child is born (outside of the U.S.) after the parent is naturalized as a U.S. citizen or when the parent is a natural-born U.S. citizen, the same burden is imposed if the parent is a father.

Essentially, the father has to prove his presence on foreign soil at the time of conception of the child, existing valid relationship with the mother of the child, and acts of acknowledgment of the relationship by the father as the child is growing up.

Natural law totally justifies why these requirements would not be necessary if the U.S. citizen parent is the mother. Nature dictates that the mother carries the child to full term and will care for the newborn.

History also tells us that over time, the United States sends out its troops to a number of countries where problems of global security and defense arise. These circumstances give rise (and continue to give rise) to inevitable consequences such as siring a child in a foreign country where they are deployed.

Questioning the authenticity of such a child’s claim of being a U.S. citizen (as a “G.I.” baby) some years thereafter (after the father goes back to the U.S. with no contact) is legitimate as far as the U.S. government is concerned. Hence, additional burden is imposed upon the father to prove a valid and legitimate parent-child relationship. Immigration laws have recognized these concerns.

It is easy to believe and assert that someone is indeed your child; proving such fact is an entirely different ball game.

In sum, adding more requirements for the father to prove a valid parent-child relationship to comply with immigration laws is not so much digressing from the standards of equal protection of the law nor is it an attempt to uphold the laws of nature but rather protecting governmental interest from fraud and untruth.


Tags:

Marriage,

Same-Sex Marriage,




Maria Rita Reyes-Stuby is a licensed attorney in Michigan. She is a graduate of the University of the Philippines College of Law. She specializes in immigration and practices in Las Vegas, Michigan, California and other states… Bernadette Bretana, a graduate of the Ateneo Law School and Ms. Stuby are licensed attorneys in the Philippines. Please call @702-403-4704 or email her at stubylaw@aol.com for any questions on this article.