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IN THE CIRCUIT COURT OF PULASKI COUNTY, ARKANSAS                                DIVISION 5In the Matter of the Paternity o...
be ordered for the parties to confirm the Petitioner’s paternity of the               children.       4.      If, as Petit...
9.      Because the minor children reside within the State of Arkansas and both                parties currently reside in...
Little Rock, Arkansas 72210                                       (501) 297-8002               IN THE CIRCUIT COURT OF PUL...
3.      Sometime in late 2008, Sarah Warren asked me to donate sperm to allow herto conceive a child by artificial insemin...
VERIFICATION       David R. Covington, who is of lawful age, being first duly sworn on oath, states:       He is the Petit...
IN THE CIRCUIT COURT OF PULASKI COUNTY, ARKANSAS                              DIVISION 5In the Matter of the Paternity of:...
VERIFICATION       David R. Covington, who is of lawful age, having been first duly sworn, states:       He is the Petitio...
IN THE CIRCUIT COURT OF PULASKI COUNTY, ARKANSAS                              DIVISION 5In the Matter of the Paternity of:...
STATE OF ARKANSAS             )                              ) ss:COUNTY OF PULASKI             )       On this 29th day o...
IN THE CIRCUIT COURT OF PULASKI COUNTY, ARKANSAS                             DIVISION 5In the Matter of the Paternity of: ...
insemination. Therefore, Petitioner is not considered in law to be the natural   father of Catalyn M. Warren and Carson L....
10. Respondent denies the allegation in Paragraph 10 that the Petitioner is the father   of the children. Respondent admit...
STATE OF ARKANSAS             )                              ) ss:COUNTY OF PULASKI             )       I, Sarah R. Warren...
IN THE CIRCUIT COURT OF PULASKI COUNTY, ARKANSAS                                DIVISION 5In the Matter of the Paternity o...
pregnancy by artificial insemination. Moreover, Respondent has never been Petitioner’swife, and the parties had no written...
CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE       I, Susan Anderson, do hereby certify that I have served a true and correct copy ofthe above a...
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Fall 2009 open memo pleadings arkansas law ai sperm donor parental rights

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Fall 2009 open memo pleadings arkansas law ai sperm donor parental rights

  1. 1. IN THE CIRCUIT COURT OF PULASKI COUNTY, ARKANSAS DIVISION 5In the Matter of the Paternity of: )CARSON L. WARREN and )CATALYN M. WARREN, by and )Through Their Natural Father )and Next Friend, ) )DAVID R. COVINGTON, ) ) Petitioner, ) Case No. 09-D-7419 )and ) )SARAH R. WARREN, ) ) Respondent. )____________________________________) PETITION TO ESTABLISH PATERNITY AND CUSTODY AND FOR CHANGE OF NAME COMES NOW, the Petitioner, David R. Covington , by and through his counsel,Benjamin Swank, and hereby states and alleges as follows: 1. Petitioner is a bona fide resident of the State of Arkansas, and the Petitionercurrently resides in Pulaski County, Arkansas, at 7115 S.W. Forest Drive, North LittleRock, Arkansas 72114. 2. Two (2) children were born to the parties: Catalyn M. Warren, d/o/b October 12, 2009, and Carson L. Warren, d/o/b October 12, 2009. 3. Petitioner, David R. Covington, upon information and belief, is the biological father of the aforementioned children, and genetic testing should Page 1 of 17
  2. 2. be ordered for the parties to confirm the Petitioner’s paternity of the children. 4. If, as Petitioner alleges upon information and belief, he is determined by genetic testing to be the father of the children, Petitioner alleges that they were conceived in Hot Springs, Arkansas, by means of artificial insemination. 5. At the time the children were conceived, Petitioner resided in Mountain Home, Arkansas. Petitioner moved to his current residence in North Little Rock, Arkansas on or about September 4, 2009, in anticipation of the children’s birth. 6. Petitioner is a fit and proper person to be awarded joint legal custody ofthe minor children and is financially capable of providing for the needs of the children. 7. No child support order or schedule of parenting time has yet been established. 8. Petitioner further states: a) The children’s present address is 3629 S.W. Auburn Road, Sherwood, Arkansas. b) The name and present address of the person with whom the children live is as follows: Sarah R. Warren, 3629 S.W. Auburn Road, Sherwood, Arkansas. c) The Petitioner knows of no person not a party to the proceedings who has physical custody of the children or claims to have custody or visitation rights with respect to the children. Page 2 of 17
  3. 3. 9. Because the minor children reside within the State of Arkansas and both parties currently reside in Pulaski County, Arkansas, this Court has jurisdiction and venue over this matter under Ark. Code Ann. § 9-10-102 (2009). 10. Should genetic testing confirm that Petitioner is the father of the children, asPetitioner believes in good faith, the children were conceived by artificial insemination inHot Springs, Arkansas. Therefore, Arkansas law applies with respect to the parental rightsof the Petitioner. 11. If it is determined, once genetic testing is complete, that David R.Covington is in fact the biological father of the children, as he believes in good faith,Petitioner requests that Catalyn M. Warren’s name be changed to Catalyn M. Covington,that Carson L. Warren’s name be changed to Carson L. Covington, and that David R.Covington be named the natural father on both children’s birth certificates. WHEREFORE, Petitioner prays this Court to enter an Order for genetic testing toestablish paternity of the minor children; for joint custody of the minor children; for anorder of child support and a schedule of parenting time; and upon the Court’s determinationof paternity, for change of the children’s names to Catalyn M. Covington and Carson L.Covington respectively; for David R. Covington to be named as the natural father on thechildren’s birth certificates; and such further relief as the Court deems just and equitable. Respectfully submitted,Dated: October 28, 2009 ___________/s/____________________ Benjamin Swank Arkansas Bar #18919 2913 S.W. Wanamaker Road Page 3 of 17
  4. 4. Little Rock, Arkansas 72210 (501) 297-8002 IN THE CIRCUIT COURT OF PULASKI COUNTY, ARKANSAS DIVISION 5In the Matter of the Paternity of: )CARSON L. WARREN and )CATALYN M. WARREN, by and )Through Their Natural Father )and Next Friend, ) )DAVID R. COVINGTON, ) ) Petitioner, ) Case No. 09-D-7419 )and ) )SARAH R. WARREN, ) ) Respondent. )____________________________________) AFFIDAVIT ACKNOWLEDGING PATERNITYSTATE OF KANSAS ) ) ss:COUNTY OF PULASKI ) I, DAVID R. COVINGTON, who is of lawful age, being first duly sworn on oath,depose and state the following: 1. I am an individual presently residing at 7115 S.W. Forest Drive, North LittleRock, Arkansas 72114. 2. I hereby acknowledge the paternity of my son Carson L. Warren anddaughter Catalyn M. Warren, both born on October 12, 2009, in that I am their biologicalfather. Page 4 of 17
  5. 5. 3. Sometime in late 2008, Sarah Warren asked me to donate sperm to allow herto conceive a child by artificial insemination. At first reluctant, I ultimately agreed, withthe understanding that I would have access to the children and would play a significant rolein their upbringing. 4. On the day of the children’s birth, I went to the Arkansas Children’sHospital to await their arrival. After their birth, hospital staff refused to allow me to seemy children, claiming that their mother, Sarah Warren, had ordered them to keep me awayfrom the children. 5. I have made additional efforts to maintain contact with my children and toestablish a paternal relationship with them. Sarah Warren refuses to allow me to see mychildren, contrary to the verbal agreement upon which I relied when I agreed to donate mysperm to her for artificial insemination purposes. 6. I hereby acknowledge my obligation to provide for the needs and expensesrelated to the care and wellbeing of my son Carson L. Warren and daughter Catalyn M.Warren. 7. I hereby acknowledge my obligation to provide for the prenatal and natalcare of my son Carson L. Warren and my daughter Catalyn M. Warren. 8. I hereby assert my parental rights to joint custody or court-ordered visitationwith my son Carson L. Warren and my daughter Catalyn M. Warren. FURTHER AFFIANT SAYETH NOT. Page 5 of 17
  6. 6. VERIFICATION David R. Covington, who is of lawful age, being first duly sworn on oath, states: He is the Petitioner in this matter; he has read this document and knows its content;and the statements and allegations contained in this document are truthful and accurate. ___________/s/___________________ David R. Covington, PetitionerSTATE OF ARKANSAS ) ) ss:COUNTY OF PULASKI ) On this 29th day of October, 2009, David R. Covington, who is personally knownto me to be the same person who executed this document, personally appeared before me, anotary public in and for Pulaski County and the State of Arkansas. In witness of his signature, I have set my hand and seal on the date last abovewritten. ___________/s/___________________ Notary PublicMy Appointment Expires: _9/30/10__ Page 6 of 17
  7. 7. IN THE CIRCUIT COURT OF PULASKI COUNTY, ARKANSAS DIVISION 5In the Matter of the Paternity of: )CARSON L. WARREN and )CATALYN M. WARREN, by and )Through Their Natural Father )and Next Friend, ) )DAVID R. COVINGTON, ) ) Petitioner, ) Case No. 09-D-7419 )and ) )SARAH R. WARREN, ) ) Respondent. )____________________________________) APPLICATION FOR APPOINTMENT OF NEXT FRIEND Petitioner, David R. Covington, upon information and belief, asserts that he is thenatural father of Carson L. Warren and Catalyn M. Warren, minor children; that Carson L.Warren and Catalyn M. Warren currently reside with Respondent in or near Sherwood,Arkansas; that Petitioner desires to institute an action on behalf of the minor children in theCircuit Court of Pulaski County, Arkansas, to establish by genetic testing that he is in factthe natural biological father of Carson L. Warren and Catalyn M. Warren, and that he, thePetitioner and the children’s putative father, be appointed as their next friend for thepurpose of instituting this action. Page 7 of 17
  8. 8. VERIFICATION David R. Covington, who is of lawful age, having been first duly sworn, states: He is the Petitioner; he has read this document and knows its content; and hisstatements and allegations in the document are truthful and accurate. ___________/s/___________________ David R. Covington, PetitionerSTATE OF ARKANSAS ) ) ss:COUNTY OF PULASKI ) On this 29th day of October, 2009, David R. Covington, who is personally knownto me to be the same person who executed this document, personally appeared before me, anotary public in and for Pulaski County and the State of Arkansas. In witness of his signature, I have set my hand and seal on the date last abovewritten. ___________/s/___________________ Notary PublicMy Appointment Expires: _9/30/10__ Page 8 of 17
  9. 9. IN THE CIRCUIT COURT OF PULASKI COUNTY, ARKANSAS DIVISION 5In the Matter of the Paternity of: )CARSON L. WARREN and )CATALYN M. WARREN, by and )Through Their Natural Father )and Next Friend, ) )DAVID R. COVINGTON, ) ) Petitioner, ) Case No. 09-D-7419 )and ) )SARAH R. WARREN, ) ) Respondent. )____________________________________) CONSENT OF NEXT FRIEND I, DAVID R. COVINGTON, consent and am willing to serve as the Next Friend ofCarson L. Warren and Catalyn M. Warren, minor children, for the purpose of instituting anaction to determine their paternity. VERIFICATION David R. Covington, who is of lawful age, having been first duly sworn, states: He is the Petitioner; he has read this document and knows its content; and hisstatements and allegations in the document are truthful and accurate. ___________/s/___________________ David R. Covington, Petitioner Page 9 of 17
  10. 10. STATE OF ARKANSAS ) ) ss:COUNTY OF PULASKI ) On this 29th day of October, 2009, David R. Covington, who is personally knownto me to be the same person who executed this document, personally appeared before me, anotary public in and for Pulaski County and the State of Arkansas. In witness of his signature, I have set my hand and seal on the date last abovewritten. ___________/s/___________________ Notary PublicMy Appointment Expires: _9/30/10__ Page 10 of 17
  11. 11. IN THE CIRCUIT COURT OF PULASKI COUNTY, ARKANSAS DIVISION 5In the Matter of the Paternity of: )CARSON L. WARREN and )CATALYN M. WARREN, by and )Through Their Natural Father )and Next Friend, ) )DAVID R. COVINGTON, ) ) Petitioner, ) Case No. 09-D-7419 )and ) )SARAH R. WARREN, ) ) Respondent. )____________________________________) ANSWER AND RESPONSE TO PETITION TO ESTABLISH PATERNITY, CUSTODY, AND CHANGE OF NAME Sarah R. Warren, by and through her attorney, Susan Anderson, for her Answer andResponse to the Petition, denies each of the allegations unless specifically admitted below. 1. Respondent is without sufficient information or knowledge to form a belief as to the truth of the allegations in Paragraph 1. 2. Respondent admits that she has two children, namely Catalyn M. Warren and Carson L. Warren, but denies that a relationship existed between Respondent and Petitioner. Respondent challenges Petitioner’s acknowledgement of paternity on the basis that Petitioner was a sperm donor only, and no written agreement ever existed between Petitioner and Respondent regarding artificial Page 11 of 17
  12. 12. insemination. Therefore, Petitioner is not considered in law to be the natural father of Catalyn M. Warren and Carson L. Warren.3. Respondent denies the allegation in Paragraph 3 in its entirety and asserts that Petitioner is not considered in law to be the birth father of Catalyn M. Warren and Carson L. Warren.4. Respondent denies the allegation in Paragraph 4 that Petitioner is the natural father of Catalyn M. Warren and Carson L. Warren. Respondent admits the allegation in Paragraph 4 that the children were conceived in Hot Springs, Arkansas, by means of artificial insemination.5. Respondent admits the allegation in Paragraph 5 that at the time the children were conceived, Petitioner resided in Mountain Home, Arkansas. Respondent has insufficient information to either admit or deny the second sentence of Paragraph 5.6. Respondent denies the allegation in Paragraph 6 in its entirely and does not believe that Petitioner is entitled to any type of legal custody or court-ordered visitation.7. Respondent admits the allegation in Paragraph 7 that no child support order or schedule of visitation has been established and alleges that neither should be established, as Petitioner is not considered in law to be the natural father of Catalyn M. Warren and Carson L. Warren.8. Respondent admits the allegations in Paragraph 8.9. Respondent admits the allegation in Paragraph 9. Page 12 of 17
  13. 13. 10. Respondent denies the allegation in Paragraph 10 that the Petitioner is the father of the children. Respondent admits that the children were conceived in the State of Arkansas as the Respondent’s fertility doctor is located in Hot Springs, Arkansas and the artificial insemination took place in Hot Springs, Arkansas.11. Respondent denies the allegation and request in Paragraph 11 for a name change in its entirety because David R. Covington is not considered in law to be the natural father of Catalyn M. Warren and Carson L. Warren. Further, Respondent objects to Petitioner’s request to change the children’s surname to Covington. Respondent does not consent to such a name change for a number of reasons, including but not limited to the fact that it is not in the best interest of her children. Respondent contends that absent her consent, Arkansas law supports her objection to changing the minor children’s name from Warren to Covington. _________/s/__________________ Susan Anderson, #15897 Attorney for Respondent Page 13 of 17
  14. 14. STATE OF ARKANSAS ) ) ss:COUNTY OF PULASKI ) I, Sarah R. Warren, of lawful age, being first duly sworn upon my oath, accordingto law, state that I am the respondent in the above matter and that the allegations andaverments contained in my Answer and Response to Petition are true and correct to the bestof my knowledge and belief. _________/s/__________________ Sarah R. WarrenSUBSCRIBED AND SWORN before me this 29th day of October, 2009._________/s/__________________ ________12/31/11_____________Notary Public My Appointment Expires CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE Susan Anderson hereby certifies that on the 29th day of October, 2009, that sheserved a copy of the above and foregoing Answer and Response to Petition to EstablishPaternity, Custody, and Change of Name, by U.S. Mail, first class, postage prepaid,addressed as follows: Benjamin Swank Attorney at Law 2913 S.W. Wanamaker Road Little Rock, AR 72210 _______________________________ Susan Anderson, #15897 Page 14 of 17
  15. 15. IN THE CIRCUIT COURT OF PULASKI COUNTY, ARKANSAS DIVISION 5In the Matter of the Paternity of: )CARSON L. WARREN and )CATALYN M. WARREN, by and )Through Their Natural Father )and Next Friend, ) )DAVID R. COVINGTON, ) ) Petitioner, ) Case No. 09-D-7419 )and ) )SARAH R. WARREN, ) ) Respondent. )____________________________________) MOTION TO DISMISS Respondent, Sarah R. Warren, by her attorney, Susan Anderson, respectfully asksthis Honorable Court to issue an Order dismissing the captioned action by virtue ofArkansas Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) for failure to state a claim upon which relief canbe granted. In support of this Motion, Respondent alleges as follows: 1. Petitioner lacks standing to file a paternity action because he is not the legalfather of the children. 2. Petitioner David R. Covington’s acknowledgement of paternity is invalid inthat Carson L. Warren and Catalyn M. Warren were not conceived as the result of a sexualrelationship between the Petitioner and Respondent. Rather, Petitioner was only the donorof semen provided to a licensed physician for the purpose of inducing Respondent’s Page 15 of 17
  16. 16. pregnancy by artificial insemination. Moreover, Respondent has never been Petitioner’swife, and the parties had no written agreement concerning this matter as provided by Ark.Code Ann. § 20-10-202(b). 3. In order for the donor of sperm to be treated in law as the natural father of achild born to a woman who is not the donor’s wife, Respondent contends that Arkansas lawrequires a written agreement to that effect between the sperm donor and the woman who isimpregnated by artificial insemination with the donor’s sperm. 4. Because Petitioner David R. Covington is not considered to be the birthfather and next friend of Catalyn M. Warren and Carson L. Warren as a matter of law, thisaction should be dismissed with prejudice. WHEREFORE, Respondent prays the Court issue an Order dismissing Case No.09-D-7419 with prejudice, and granting Respondent such other and further relief as theCourt deems just and equitable. Respectfully submitted, ___________________________ Susan Anderson, #15897 Attorney for Respondent Page 16 of 17
  17. 17. CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE I, Susan Anderson, do hereby certify that I have served a true and correct copy ofthe above and foregoing document on counsel of record by placing the same in the U.S.mail, postage prepaid, on the 29th day of October, 2009, addressed to: Benjamin Swank 2913 S.W. Wanamaker Road Little Rock, Arkansas 72210 Attorney for Petitioner _______________________________ Susan Anderson, #15897 Attorney for Respondent Page 17 of 17

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