Spanish court rules woman who gave birth at 64 unfit to care for twins

Mother, 69, who gave birth to twins aged 64 following IVF has her children taken into custody after Spanish court rules she cannot care for them

  • The Spanish Supreme Court has upheld an earlier ruling to remove the children
  • The twins, now aged four, have been living in foster care since shortly after their births in 2017
  • Their mother, known only as Mauricia I, was deemed unfit to care for the children
  • Another daughter, now aged 11, was also taken into care in 2014 

A 69-year-old woman has lost custody of the twins she gave birth to aged 64 after Spain’s highest court ruled that she was incapable of looking after them.

The Spanish Supreme Court upheld an April 22, 2020 ruling to remove the children, handed down by the Provincial Court of Burgos, which found that the twins were not being cared for in ‘optimal conditions’.

The Supreme Court ruling on Monday brings to an end a four-year legal battle by the woman, identified only as Mauricia I, who gave birth to the twins in 2017 after having fertility treatment in the United States. 

The court found that the twins were ‘in an obvious situation of vulnerability’ due to their mother’s inability to care for them properly or to cooperate with social services.

A 69-year-old woman has lost custody of the twins she gave birth to aged 64 after Spain’s highest court ruled that she was incapable of looking after them

The Spanish Supreme Court upheld an April 22, 2020 ruling to remove the children, handed down by the Provincial Court of Burgos, which found that the twins were not being cared for in ‘optimal conditions’

The decision was not based on the woman’s age or mental health, the court said, but rather on the ‘evaluations of experts.’

A report issued by the Provincial Court of Burgos at the time of their initial ruling, cited: ‘ the mother’s personality traits significantly affected the affective and psychosocial development of the minors.’

It added that ‘non-existent’ family relationships, isolation and a lack of a supportive social network were also of concern. 

The twins, now aged four, were taken into foster care shortly after they were born in 2017  because they were considered to be at risk.  

Mauricia also has another child who was placed into foster care in 2014 after the mother was ruled unfit to care for her.

The daughter, now aged 11, was also born through IVF and lives in Canada.  

The Supreme Court ruling on Monday brings to an end a four-year legal battle by the woman, identified only as Mauricia I, who gave birth to the twins in 2017 after having fertility treatment in the United States

Mauricia was allowed to maintain contact with the twins after they were taken into care on the condition that she was closely monitored by social services, however it was decided that she had not been following their advice closely enough and the children were permanently removed from her care.

She challenged the decision, but her appeal was rejected by the local Family Court, in a decision now upheld by the Supreme Court. 

Mauricia has exhausted her legal options for now but can request that the court review its decision every two years. The court said it did not predict a different outcome in the short term.

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