The Ramat Gan Family Court set a precedent Tuesday after allowing a gay couple to finally adopt their foster son after 14 years.
Prof. Uzi Even and Dr. Amit Kama have been serving as foster parents to Yossi Even-Kama, 30, since 1995.
"The court finds that all of the stipulations noted in the adoption laws and pertaining to the foster child in question have been duly met," Justice Alisa Miller noted in her ruling. "I hereby grant the adoption decree and state that Yossi Even-Kama is now Uzi Even and Amit Kama's son."
Yossi first arrived at the Even-Kama home in 1995, after being disowned by his family for being a homosexual. Even and Kama soon petitioned the Israeli Social Services to become his foster parents, and when their request was granted they also became Israel's first-ever gay couple to be recognized as a foster family.
In 2004, Even and Kama were married in Toronto, Canada.
A long time in the making. The now official Even-Kama family
"The decision to make the adoption official came after we applied for reduced tuition for Yossi with the (Tel Aviv) University, where Uzi serves as a professor," Kama told Ynet. "The request was denied since he was not officially recognized as our son, so we decided to begin adoption proceedings two years ago."
An official family now
The court ordered Social Services to review the case – as it does in any adoption case – "but Social Services thought the proceeding may be illegal and eventually we had to petition for Attorney General Menachem Mazuz to rule on the matter," added Kama.
"The Attorney General's Office found that there was no problem with the proceeding and the review was put together. The judge found that in our case, since we have had a parent-child relationship for so long, we were already a de facto family, but we only became an official family now," he said.
Emotions ran high in the courtroom after Judge Miller read her ruling. "I'm very excited. We started off thinking we had no chance of getting here and now, two year later, we got it (the decree of adoption)," said the newly-adopted son.
Yossi's biological father had to sign away his parental rights in order to allow for the adoption to come through, which he did. "I'm grateful to him for that," he said.
"This may be only a formal authorization, but formalities do count for something and I'm very happy," he added.
Knesset Member Nitzan Horowitz (Meretz) welcomed the court's decision, saying that "the right to adopt is a fundamental right. This is an immensely important step towards state-recognition of gay families."
Horowitz offered the Even-Kama family his heartfelt congratulations and wished them "a very happy life together."