Gay Man Adopts His Partner to Avoid Inheritance Tax


Their lawyer filed all the paperwork and the couple had a 15-minute hearing at the courthouse.

"Apparently, it was their first adult adoption and I was having great angst over that. [The town we live in] is in the conservative Bible Belt," said John. "What if the judge says no?"

In sworn testimony, the men answered straightforward questions: How long had they known each other? How long had they lived together? How long had they been in their current place?

"Our attorney said we didn't have to come out and tell him we were gay," said John. "But if asked our sexual preference, I would have to say yes. I was under oath."

The judge did turn to John and said, "I am really curious, why are you adopting [Gregory]?"

"I said, 'Because it's our only legal option to protect ourselves from Pennsylvania's inheritance taxes,'" said John. "He got it immediately."

The judge agreed to sign the adoption papers on the spot and handed it to the clerk. Then he turned and looked at John, "Congratulations, it's a boy."

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