A federal court on Wednesday ordered the U.S. Department of State to recognize the daughter of a gay couple as a U.S. citizen.

Roee and Adiel Kiviti, who married in 2013 in California, welcomed their daughter, Kessem Kiviti, in February 2019 via surrogacy in Canada.

“We are tremendously relieved that the court recognized what we always knew: that our daughter was a U.S. citizen by birth,” the couple said. “We are proud we taught our little girl to stand up for what's right even before she could crawl. No child should be denied her rights because her parents are LGBT, and no family should have to endure the indignity we did.”

The State Department declared that Kessem was “born out of wedlock” and denied her U.S. citizenship.

Adiel became a citizen in January 2019 after immigrating from Israel. While both fathers are U.S. citizens, the State Department ignored Roee's status because he does not have a biological connection to his daughter. The government said that Adiel had not met a residency requirement of five years.

The Kivitis, who live in Maryland, were represented by Immigration Equality, Lambda Legal, and pro bono counsel Morgan Lewis.

“Today, the court rejected the State Department’s efforts to insert a biology requirement into the law where none exists and its resulting discriminatory treatment of the families formed by married same-sex couples.” said Karen Loewy, senior counsel at Lambda Legal. “As the Supreme Court has made clear, the Constitution forbids the government from advantaging different-sex couples over same-sex couples in providing a benefit related to marriage. This decision is a long-overdue victory for this family and we hope it brings peace of mind to them and all LGBT parents in similar situations.”

The case is similar to what happened to another gay couple from Georgia. Immigration Equality and Lambda Legal also filed a lawsuit in that case in July 2019.