Puerto Rico's Supreme Court voted to uphold a law banning gay couples from adopting children on Wednesday.
The 5-4 vote came in the case of a woman who has sought for the last eight years to adopt a 12-year-old girl, who her partner of more than 20 years had birthed after in-vitro fertilisation.
A majority of judges upheld a law stating a person cannot adopt a single-parent child if the would-be adopter is of the same sex as the child's mother or father without that parent losing their legal rights.
The judges insisted that a family composed of a mother and father is best for a child's dignity, stability and well-being.
Chief Justice Federico Hernandez Denton dissented, calling the law unconstitutional and saying the plaintiff's lawyers had proved the proposed adoption would benefit the child.
The girl, he noted, proudly stated: "I have two mothers."