In 2013, California enacted a law which allowed a child to have more than two parents. This is sometimes referred to as the three parent law. However, legally there is no limitation to the number of parents a minor child may have.
In order to make a finding that a child has more than two parents, the court must find that it would be detrimental to the child to remove an adult acting as a parent from that child's life.
Usually the adult must be an interested person who has assumed the responsibility of acting as a parent and has established a relationship with the minor child. Once a relationship has been established, the court determines if parentage may apply.
The circumstances where this may occur vary. For instance, if a child is raised by a step-parent, the stepparent may qualify as a parent with rights to visitation and custody. It may also apply when a child is born during a marriage, but the husband is not the biological father of the child.
The law has not reached its full ramifications. It still must be tested in family court.
Once a family court has determined that a child has more than three parents, the court must determine which parents pay child support, which parents receive child support, and how much custody the parents shall receive.y and visitation.