LGBTQ+

Gay American Couple Sues State Dept After Child is Denied U.S. Citizenship

This gay couple is suing the State Department for denying their child U.S. citizenship.
 
“They don’t recognize us as a family, they don’t recognize our children as born to us,” Adiel Kiviti stated. “They don’t recognize each of us as the parent of both of our children, even though, you know, both were born into this marriage.”
 
Kiviti and his husband Roee are U.S. citizens and both were born in Israel. In 2016, they had their first child Lev via surrogate in Canada and he was granted U.S. citizenship after birth. But their second child Kessem was denied citizenship in 2019, despite going through the same process.
 
Legally, a person born outside the U.S. to two married U.S. citizens is a citizen at birth. But the State Department reportedly cited two provisions in the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). The state ruled that Kessem was born “out of wedlock,” despite her parents’ marriage and only acknowledged Adiel as her parents because they share a biological relationship.
 
Roee and Adiel’s lawsuit is the fourth one to challenge the policy that surrogacy or sperm donations result in children “out of wedlock.” A strict interpretation of the INA is one way the Trump administration has tried controlling “birthright citizenship.”