A year after a Croatian court ruled that same-sex couples have the right to become foster parents, another court has ruled in favor of allowing same-sex couples in Croatia to apply to adopt.
The ruling by the Zagreb Administrative Court was announced Wednesday, nearly five years after two men, who are legally recognized as “life partners,” were denied the opportunity to adopt as a couple, according to BalkanInsight.com.
In May 2016, Mladen Kozic and Ivo Segota applied to be adoptive parents at their local welfare shelter but were rejected within a few months, so they took the issue to court. Some LGBTQ+ Croatian residents have been able to adopt by doing so as single parents, but not as couples, even if they are in a “life partnership,” the country's legal term for same-sex marriage.
The court's ruling in favor of the Kozic and Segota means all LGBTQ+ couples in Croatia can now apply to adopt, and must not be discriminated on the basis of their sexual orientation.
After the Administrative Court ruled in favor of equality this week, LGBTQ+ rights organization The Rainbow Family Association called it a “historic moment,” BalkanInsight reports.
“The child’s right to the best possible adoptive parents remains a priority,” the RFA said. “This ruling does not automatically mean that gay and lesbian couples are to become adoptive parents – but life partners can now fearlessly contact their social welfare centre and apply for an evaluation for adoption.”
Kozic and Segota have been fostering two young children since the country allowed same-sex couples to become foster parents in early 2020, according to BalkanInsight.