Kentucky Senate passes bill granting the right to collect child support for unborn babies

Kentucky Senate passes bill granting the right to collect child support for unborn babies

KY. (AP)— The Republican-led Kentucky Senate easily approved a bipartisan bill Tuesday to allow unborn children to receive child support.

A parent might request child support a year after giving birth to offset pregnancy costs. Senate Bill 110 passed 36-2 with little debate to go to the House. Republican supermajorities in both houses.

Republican state Sen. Whitney Westerfield said later that the overwhelming support shows that pregnancy requires the other parent to assist cover expenditures for nine months. Westerfield was a passionate abortion opponent and bill sponsor.

"I believe life begins at conception," Westerfield told his colleagues. "But even if you don't, having a child before birth has obligations and costs."

Parents can request child assistance for pregnancy expenditures up to a year after giving birth, but the time restriction is severe.

“So if there's not a child support order until the child is 8, this isn't going to apply,” Westerfield told a Senate committee reviewing the measure. “This doesn't apply at a year and a day. It only applies to orders placed within a year after birth."

Kentucky is one of six states proposing child support back-to-conception laws like Georgia's. Georgia permits prospective parents to claim its income tax deduction for dependent children before birth; Utah passed a pregnancy tax break last year; and at least a few other states are considering similar measures.

The Kentucky law was heavily revised before Senate approval. The initial bill authorized a child support action at any time after conception, but it was altered to apply retrospectively after delivery with a time restriction.

Abortion-rights advocates will watch for anti-abortion politicians to alter the measure to “set the stage for personhood” for a fetus, said Tamarra Wieder, Kentucky State director for Planned Parenthood Alliance Advocates. The legislation must pass a House committee and the House. Changes in the House would send the bill back to the Senate.

The debate comes after the Alabama Supreme Court ruled that frozen embryos are legally protected children, highlighting the anti-abortion movement's longstanding goal of protecting embryos and fetuses as much as the people carrying them.

Read the original article here.

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