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Court Skips Child Custody Dispute Involving Women

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LANSING (WWJ/AP) – The Michigan Supreme Court has refused to take an appeal from a woman who has been fighting for joint custody of three children born to her female former partner.

In a 4-3 decision released Saturday, the court’s conservative majority says it’s not convinced the issues should be reviewed.

Renee Harmon and Tammy Davis of Grosse Ile ended their relationship in 2008 after 19 years. Davis had three children through artificial insemination.

In April 2010, a Wayne County judge ruled that Harmon had legal standing to try to pursue joint custody of the children she helped raise. But, the Michigan appeals court says state law doesn’t grant parental rights to Harmon based on an agreement between two unmarried and unrelated people.

Supreme Court justices Marilyn Kelly, Diane Hathaway and Michael Cavanagh wanted to hear Harmon’s appeal. Kelly says the case is very significant and “cries out for a ruling by the state’s highest court.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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