A gay man has won joint custody of the two children he had through artficial insemination with a lesbian couple.
The company director, of Sussex, had been battling the children’s lesbian mother and her civil partner over where they should live.
The lesbian mother had two children, now aged seven and ten, with the man after he advertised in a gay magazine to become a father.
The father’s original advertisement said he was a solvent man who had “everything but kids”. It added that he wished for “a little involvement” as a father.
A previous ruling granted the father a joint residency order but the mother, who cannot be named, challenged it at the Court of Appeal.
However, she lost and the father will be given custody of the children for 152 days a year, the court ruled.
Lady Justice Black, who made the ruling, urged the parents to “put aside their differences” for the sake of their children.
According to the Daily Mail, she said: “The adults may be very concerned about issues of status such as who could and should be classed as ‘the parents’ but those matters are not likely to be of particular concern to the children.”
The court heard that the father had acted as a parent to the children, taking them to doctors’ appointments and paying their school fees.
But the mother argued that he was trying to “marginalise” her civil partner and “overpower” the children with his forceful personality.
Lady Justice Black added that the children would “inevitably suffer” if the animosity between the father and the lesbian couple continued.