The Jason Patric custody battle has gone very public with his emotional interview with Katie Couric where he spoke out for the first time about his fight to share custody of his three-year-old son Gus with mother Danielle Schreiber.
It’s a somewhat complicated case that has already inspired a California state bill to give sperm donors the right to sue for parental rights. According to an ABC report on SB 115 last week, the bill passed the Senate but is still facing opposition because of doubts that it might create even more complicated custody and family battles in the future.
According to an MSN summary, the 47-year-old The Lost Boys star donated the sperm to ex-girlfriend Danielle Schreiber, but he signed away his rights before the baby was born and his name doesn’t appear on the birth certificate. As a result, under current California law, Jason Patric isn’t recognized as the child’s father — only as a sperm donor who has no legal standing.
The actor said that he left his name off the birth certificate in a misguided effort to protect his son: “I wanted to protect him from the public eye that I have felt hasn’t been kind to me. Any private documents – the consent forms, school forms, paediatrician’s all have me as the father, but I didn’t want the paparazzi taking pictures of my child coming out of [the hospital.]”
Last year, Schreiber left him and took the child, sparking the custody battle with Jason Patric — a battle he lost earlier in the year when a court ruled he had no rights to see Gus.
On Monday, Patric told Katie Couric (as you’ll see in the video below) that, “This is a case where I’ve had my son stolen from me and I have to do anything I can to try and get him back.”
Schreiber responded with a statement which you can read in full on the Katie website. But here’s a key excerpt:
“When Jason offered me his sperm, it was under the condition that his donation never be made public and that he would not be a father to the child. I chose to use a known donor over a stranger, but only after I knew the law would protect my ability to make the best decisions for my son.
“I allowed Jason to have contact with my son while we were dating, and even then he insisted that I keep his donation a secret and uphold our original agreement. I never would have allowed this contact if I thought it would put my rights as a mom and the stability of my son’s future at risk.”
Schreiber said that the proposed new California state law is just Jason Patric’s attempt to make an end run around their agreement, continuing a custody battle she considers unfair.
But Jason Patric said he was an involved father to his child until 20 weeks ago, when she broke off contact without much warning.
With the right to even see his three-year-old son at stake, Jason Patric isn’t ready to surrender. That’s why you’re now seeing a public campaign to encourage people to pressure the California lawmakers to pass the bill.
This video is a preview posted by Katie Couric. It doesn’t give away her entire interview, but it shows enough for you to see the emotion in Jason Patric’s face:
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