Topeka, Kansas — A Kansas man is fighting a lawsuit after being ordered by government officials to pay child support for a baby that he fathered with a lesbian via artificial insemination.
William Marotta states that he responded to a Craigslist classified ad in 2009 where two women were seeking a man to donate his sperm so that they could have a baby. He says that he relinquished all rights to the baby at the time of the procedure, including any responsibility to provide for the child.
Jennifer Schreiner, then 31, later gave birth to a girl, and raised her for a time with 37-year-old Angela Bauer. The two had already adopted several children heretofore.
However, the following year, Schreiner and Bauer parted ways. Bauer continued to provide for a few years, but due to what she classifies as a “significant illness,” she could no longer work.
Schreiner then turned to the Kansas Department for Children and Families for government assistance. She states that the department then demanded that she provide the name of the father of the child as Marotta’s name was not listed on the child’s birth certificate or any other documents. Bauer also attempted to get involved.
“One gentleman told me he wasn’t going to discuss anything with me because I’m not the parent or legal guardian,” she told the Topeka Capital-Journal.
The state of Kansas does not recognize homosexual relationships, so the paperwork reflected the situation as being a baby being born to a single mother. State law also prohibits the collection of child support payments from those of the same sex.
In October, Marotta became aware that the Kansas Department for Children and Families was going to pursue child support payments for the little girl, now three. He told reporters that he feels that he’s being targeted.
“I have a hunch part of the reason this is going this way is because of people’s feelings toward same-sex couples,” Marotta said. “I can’t help but feel this is somewhat of a political issue.”
He states that he has already spent several thousand dollars fighting against the government.
“As the legal bills mount, I’m sure it’s going to leave more of a distaste,” Marotta commented. “In the long run, I think this will be a good thing, but I’m the one getting squashed. I can’t even believe it’s gone this far at this point and there’s not a … thing I can do about it.”
“The only good thing I can see about this is it’s going to open a lot of eyes,” he added. “But I’m like, ‘Why me?’”
The lesbian women say that they are supportive of Marotta and believe that the state is wrong in forcing him to pay for the child.
“I feel like the state of Kansas has made a mess out of the situation,” said Bauer.
A hearing is set for January 8th in Shawnee County District Court. Marotta is seeking a dismissal of the case through his attorney.