Joan Hollinger

Surrogacy is a mess

Joan Heifetz Hollinger quoted in Slate, August 6, 2014

“There are issues across the board with regard to health care of the surrogate and whether the surrogate can or should be required to undergo tests, including fetal diagnostic test or an amnio.” If a surrogate decides to keep a baby against the commissioning parents’ wishes, are they responsible for that baby? If the surrogate raises the child, can she sue the biological father for child support?

Supreme Court rules for adoptive family in dispute

Joan Heifetz Hollinger quoted by National Public Radio, June 25, 2013

“This is a case that dealt with a situation where a biological father, who knows about the pregnancy and a birth … sits on the sidelines,” Heifetz Hollinger says. “This is a message to mothers and fathers that simply using the biological trump card is not a way to establish or sustain a family relationship.”

Adoptive Couple v. Baby Girl

Joan Hollinger quoted in Family In Law, April 11, 2013

“I am most concerned about the disruptive consequences for women and children involved in private adoptive placements if the Court were to uphold the South Carolina ruling. I’ve already put in a pitch for expeditious child-centered resolutions of contested cases and more open adoptions that would not eviscerate children’s ties to their original families.”

Prop 8 in the Supreme Court

Joan Hollinger interviewed by KPFA-FM, Up Front, March 27, 2013

“The media overwhelmingly predicted that the healthcare act would be declared unconstitutional. That turned out, of course, to be incorrect primarily because Chief Justice Roberts, who acted during the oral argument as if he had no use for the healthcare act, ended up being the most significant vote on the court for maintaining the constitutionality of core provisions of the act. So, with that warning in mind about reading or misreading the clues from an oral argument, I would say that yesterday was somewhat baffling.”

Gay marriage at a crossroads in California

Joan Hollinger quoted in The Desert Sun, March 24, 2013

But the Supreme Court could overturn the 9th Circuit’s opinion for a variety of reasons, including if Kennedy disagrees with the court’s “very explicit effort to apply Romer to Proposition 8,” Hollinger said. “Kennedy may feel, well, Proposition 8 is a sort of specific target,” Hollinger said. “It isn’t a total rejection of gay people from participation in California society.”

Invoking tribal ties isn’t justified in this case

Joan Hollinger writes for The New York Times, Room for Debate, January 24, 2013

Is it inconsistent with the … Indian Child Welfare Act to allow an Indian biological father who has forfeited any parental rights he might have had under state law to block a non-Indian mother’s voluntary adoptive placement of her newborn child with prospective parents selected by her? Yes. The invocation of the federal law in such circumstances conflicts with its underlying goals and is an unwarranted interference with the child’s liberty interests in remaining with her adoptive family, as well as with her mother’s right to serve her child’s best interests by relinquishing her for adoption.

The toll of Russian vodka on American families

Joan Hollinger quoted in Latitude News, September 27, 2012

Hollinger points out that Russia and the U.S. recently signed a bilateral agreement on adoption, though its protocols have yet to be implemented.  Even when they are, she’s not necessarily optimistic that it will succeed in regulating what is essentially a “wild west” environment of shady operators…. “Even though the biggest players are still in business and doing a lot of it, a great many of these smaller agencies are done with because they’ve failed to be honest and up front with parents.”