Adoption: Severing the Custodial Parents’ Rights

Adopting a child in ColoradoIndividuals who wish to adopt usually enlist the help of attorneys well-versed in the procedures of a certain jurisdiction. This helps ensure that the adoption process goes smoothly.

Unfortunately, there may be instances where custodial parents may not give their consent for the adoption to take place. In these cases, the adoptive parents may look into certain factors to terminate the other parents’ rights to child, eliminating the requirement of having their consent.

Terminating Parental Rights

The courts may consider terminating the rights of parents if they abandoned the child; are unfit parents; or if they turn out to not be the biological parents of the child.

• Abandonment

This means that the parents haven’t been present to take care of the child, or have not provided financial support. For example, if a parent has continuously failed to provide child support, a court can terminate their parental rights. This is just one situation to consider for an adoption attorney. Colorado Springs adoption cases have also dealt with terminating parental rights if the parents abandoned the child for a considerable period with no intent to return.

• Unfitness

A court may determine if the parents are unfit to continue having parental rights to a child. At the hearing, a court examines if the parents are abusive or neglectful; if they have a mental disorder; or if they are serving a prison sentence.

Apart from not supporting the child, the court may look into certain conditions, such as if the parent has left the child in foster care for 15 months or more. Should the parents have problems with drug or alcohol addiction, these may also work to discredit their fitness for being parents to the child.

• Non-Biological Parenthood

A court can terminate the parental rights, especially of fathers, if it proves that they don’t have any biological relation to the child. When children are born to a married couple, the husband is believed to be the father. If a man marries a woman after the birth of the children, and the man is named as father on the birth certificate, the man is also believed to be the father.

Should custodial parents be resistant to the adoption process, it is advisable to consult with an experienced lawyer. Having sufficient legal advice will greatly help in looking for effective strategies to continue the adoption.