The biological mother of a seven-year-old Vermont girl has been ordered by a court to hand her over to her former partner.

Lisa Miller and Janet Jenkins had a civil union ceremony in Vermont, America, in 2000 and their daughter Isabella was born to Miller two years later through artificial insemination.

But the couple split up in 2003 when Miller became an evangelical Christian and renounced homosexuality. She then moved to Virginia.

Their civil union was dissolved in 2007 and Miller was granted custody of Isabella with Jenkins allowed liberal visiting rights.

The Supreme Courts of Virginia and Vermont agreed with this decision, saying the case was equal to a heterosexual couple fighting over custody.

However, a family court judge found Miller in contempt of court last month for denying Jenkins access to her child, Associated Press reports.

Judge William D Cohen, the family court judge in Vermont, ruled that the only way to ensure fair access was to switch custody rights to Jenkins.

He denied a request from Miller to delay the transfer but then said she had apparently “disappeared” with Isabella and broken contact with her lawyers.

Her lawyers have said that moving the child would be difficult for her, and that she shares her mother’s beliefs about homosexuality.

Miller was ordered to hand over custody this Friday at 1pm at the home of Jenkins’ parents in Virginia.