Biological Fathers' Rights

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Lack of attention to biological fathers' rights can have serious consequences, a lesson courts are handing down with more and more frequency. While the Baby Sam case filled the headlines for several years, this certainly wasn't the first case where a father's rights have landed on the front page.

The Baby M Case

In 1996, Baby M was relinquished by her mother and placed with Darrell and Cindy Matthews. Alphonso Andrews, the baby's father, never signed any consent forms and contested the placement. A Pennsylvania State Supreme Court ruling sent a message to adoption agencies and attorneys about failure to get consent from both birth parents. Genesis of Pittsburgh, Inc. failed to get Andrews' approval for the placement and, as a result, custody of Baby M is being decided four years - instead of a matter of days or weeks - after placement, a bittersweet victory for Andrews and a devastating one for the Matthews.

Arguments in the case included comparisons of Andrews' and the Matthews' education and financial stability, which caused one lower court judge to rule initially in favor of the Matthews; however, the higher court found that neither the agency nor the Matthews had proper authority to assume the role of parent. A baby cannot be adopted without the termination or relinquishment of both parents' rights, and Andrews' rights were alive and well.

Andrews is quoted as saying, "They said it was for the best interest of the child. But that is not their child. It is mine. I can't help it that they are unable to have children. That doesn't give them the right to take mine."

Biological Fathers Do Have Rights

A woman making an adoption plan may conceal the pregnancy from the biological father or indicate that the father has no interest in the child when this may not be the case. Unless the father learns of the pregnancy and/or the adoption plan and moves to stop it, the adoption will proceed. While most fathers either agree to an adoption plan or do not contest termination of their parental rights, there are those who want to parent their children, and some are exercising that right.

In September, 1999, the Oklahoma State Supreme Court ruled in favor of Joseph Ferguson, giving him custody of the son he learned about only two days before the adoption agency moved to terminate his parental rights. The baby's mother had never told Ferguson about the pregnancy and placement had been made with a family in another state.

Like Alphonso Andrews in Pennsylvania, Ferguson sympathizes with the couple who planned to adopt his son saying, "I believe they entered the adoption process in good faith, and it's unfortunate that it had to come to this."

Putative Father Registries

If you think you are the father of a child and you want to have a say in whether the child is adopted, you can register with the Putative Father Registry if your state has one, or take other measures to protect your rights. Even if you signed the child's birth certificate and are under 18 or 21 years of age (depending on the state), you can register to make the best effort to protect your rights.
A 'putative father' is a man who may be a child's father, but who was not married to the child's mother before the child was born and has not established the fact that he is the father in a court proceeding. If the child's mother wants to place the child for adoption, the putative father must take steps to show that he is the legal father of the child if he wants to have any say in the adoption. By registering with the Putative Father Registry, a father takes one step toward proving he is the child's father.
(State of Illinois)
However, along with those rights come responsibilities. These can include medical expenses during the pregnancy and support payments. Know your rights and responsibilites. If you do want to register on a putative father registry or sign some other form of paternity recognition form, be sure that you understand how this will affect your future right to parent or obtain custody, as well as the financial responsibilities.

Risk in Adoption

Many states have provisions for a period of time during which a birth parent may change his/her mind about placement after signing relinquishment papers. In those states, agencies and attorneys are obligated to advise adopting parents that this could occur; however in all cases and all states, it is important that agencies and attorneys make every effort to meet with both biological parents to secure proper consent. Cutting corners only increases the risk that the placement will be challenged or overturned.

Adopting parents must also take responsibility for asking the right questions and making sure everyone's rights are being protected. They should know what their state considers grounds for reversal of an adoption (such as coercion) and become proactive in the process of ensuring their adoption is being handled ethically and according to best practices. When adopting parents, in the excitement of seeing their family dreams become a reality, don't ask the hard questions, they could face the enormous heartbreak of reversal of the placement.

Adopting parents: Ask the tough questions. Hold your agency or attorney accountable. Knowing that the placement meets all legal requirements is an important beginning for your new family.

Biological parents: Know your rights, and understand the importance of openness and honesty in making your adoption plan. If parenting is an option for one, that needs to be explored before placement is considered.

It cannot be said often enough: Knowledge empowers! When adopting parents are comfortable with the legalities of birth parent consent, they can focus their energies on parenting. And when biological parents make informed decisions, the best interest of the child will be better served. Both sets of parents must do their best - even in this time of roller-coaster emotions, to ensure ethical and legal practices are observed. Knowledge makes it possible.

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mr jackson - 15 hours ago
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My name is jackson from northern Ireland, i am 30 years old, happily married with three kids named Alex, Jane and Kate, i am here majorly to thank and share my wonderful testimony with the general public about a great and powerful spell caster called Dr odijie who helped me in retrieving back my marriage union with my ex wife. We have been living a marvelous and a luxurious until the day i was fired from the office where i work. As times goes on i started to noticed some changes in the behavior of my wife that she don't cook again in the morning as usual before she go to her shop and also she now come home late at night. So one day she gone to her shop without cooking and not checking the kids and at about 10:00pm in the night she has not shown up and i decided to close the doors and i stayed in the sitting room to wait for her. At about 10:30pm i heard my door bell and i knew it was she and i refuse to open the door, she keep on knocking until a stage that i decided to open it and whe #1
Tracy Jones - 1 day ago
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franksandra - 3 days ago
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mellissa - 4 days ago
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Joyne Harvey - 4 days ago
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alisa - 5 days ago
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Denise sasha - 5 days ago
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Elena deri - 5 days ago
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Tracy Jones - 1 week ago
Unimaginable and unbelievable. I am Tracy Jones from the United States and i have a good news to share to the entire world. Do you need your ex husband or lover urgently? I wanna tell you that you need not to worry because i have a good news for those out there that are faced or similar to such situation because there is always a hope and a solution to all problem. There is a great spell caster called Dr Eku who can really solve your problem. Getting my lover back is what i can't imagine but when I was losing Newton, I needed help and somewhere to turn badly but my Aunty told me about this spell caster who also helped her on the internet. I thought it won't work but i just tried to give this man a chance and i ordered a LOVE SPELL. Two days later, my phone rang. Newton was his old self again and wanted to come back to me! Not only come back, the spell caster opened him up to know how much I loved and needed him. This Spell Casting isn’t brainwashing, but he opened up his eyes to know #9
Tracy Jones - 1 week ago
Unimaginable and unbelievable. I am Tracy Jones from the United States and i have a good news to share to the entire world. Do you need your ex husband or lover urgently? I wanna tell you that you need not to worry because i have a good news for those out there that are faced or similar to such situation because there is always a hope and a solution to all problem. There is a great spell caster called Dr Eku who can really solve your problem. Getting my lover back is what i can't imagine but when I was losing Newton, I needed help and somewhere to turn badly but my Aunty told me about this spell caster who also helped her on the internet. I thought it won't work but i just tried to give this man a chance and i ordered a LOVE SPELL. Two days later, my phone rang. Newton was his old self again and wanted to come back to me! Not only come back, the spell caster opened him up to know how much I loved and needed him. This Spell Casting isn’t brainwashing, but he opened up his eyes to know #10
Norina Robin - 1 week ago
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luarenfisher - 1 week ago
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Mary Hanson (xxxx) - 1 week ago
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Thanks to Dr. IBUDU for saving my marriage!!! My names are Mary Hanson, I have been married to my Husband for 7 years, we have 2 kids together and our marriage was wonderful.Am very happy to tell every one my testimony Am sherry from united states,am a nurse, this story of my love life. Another woman had to take my lover away from me and my husband left me and the kids and we have suffered for 2years until i met a post where this man called Dr. IBUDU have helped many people and i decided to give him a reply on his Email if he can help me bring my lover back home and he ask me some information which i send to him and that of my husband and after 48hours as he have told me, i saw a car drove into the house and behold it was my husband and he have come to me and the kids crying and begging for forgiveness and that is why i am happy today He also set my friend free from HIV Dr. IBUDU really make the woman i am today for any one looking for help contact: xxxx #13
Clark diana - 1 week ago
my name is Clark diana and am from USA, I want to use this opportunity to thank my great Doctor ZATO who really made my life a pleasurable one today. This great man Dr ZATO brought my husband back to me, i had two lovely kids for my husband, about four years ago i and my husband has been into one quarrel or the other until he finally left me for one lady. I felt my life was over and my kids thought they would never see their father again. I tried to be strong just for the kids but i could not control the pains that torments my heart, my heart was filled with sorrows and pains because i was really in love with my husband. Every day and night i think of him and always wish he would come back to me, until one day i met a good friend of mine that was also in a situation like me but her problem was her ex-boyfriend who she had an unwanted pregnancy for and he refused to take responsibility and dumped her. she told me that mine was a small case and that i should not worry about it at all, so #14
joelsandra - 1 week ago
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Hello viewer's , i want to share with you of a great spell caster who help me cast a spell on my ex boy friend who used me and dumped me for my girl friend, so when i met this great spell caster called Dr Aza, i explain what i was passing through. So he gave me instruction to follow, which i did, after three day's when the spell was cast, my ex boy friend called and started apologizing to me and said he want me back.You can also contact him if you have any problem via mail: xxxx or call his agent via cell number: xxxxx060, to help you with your problem. #15
Tracy Jones - 1 week ago
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Unimaginable and unbelievable. I am Tracy Jones from the United States and i have a good news to share to the entire world. Do you need your ex husband or lover urgently? I wanna tell you that you need not to worry because i have a good news for those out there that are faced or similar to such situation because there is always a hope and a solution to all problem. There is a great spell caster called Dr Eku who can really solve your problem. Getting my lover back is what i can't imagine but when I was losing Newton, I needed help and somewhere to turn badly but my Aunty told me about this spell caster who also helped her on the internet. I thought it won't work but i just tried to give this man a chance and i ordered a LOVE SPELL. Two days later, my phone rang. Newton was his old self again and wanted to come back to me! Not only come back, the spell caster opened him up to know how much I loved and needed him. This Spell Casting isn’t brainwashing, but he opened up his eyes to know #16
Tracy Jones - 2 weeks ago
Unimaginable and unbelievable. I am Tracy Jones from the United States and i have a good news to share to the entire world. Do you need your ex husband or lover urgently? I wanna tell you that you need not to worry because i have a good news for those out there that are faced or similar to such situation because there is always a hope and a solution to all problem. There is a great spell caster called Dr Eku who can really solve your problem. Getting my lover back is what i can't imagine but when I was losing Newton, I needed help and somewhere to turn badly but my Aunty told me about this spell caster who also helped her on the internet. I thought it won't work but i just tried to give this man a chance and i ordered a LOVE SPELL. Two days later, my phone rang. Newton was his old self again and wanted to come back to me! Not only come back, the spell caster opened him up to know how much I loved and needed him. This Spell Casting isn’t brainwashing, but he opened up his eyes to know #17
Susan Brown - 4 days ago
Greetings to every one that is reading this testimony ' just want to share my experience with the world on how Dr Ofemo help me got my love back and saved my marriage I was married for 5years with 3kids and we lived happily until things started getting ugly and we had fights and arguments almost every time it got worse at a point that she filed for divorce I tried my best to make her change her mind #18
Joyce Robin - 2 weeks ago
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I Have never believer in love spell until i met this world's top spell caster. He is really powerful and could help cast spell to bring back once's gone.Dr Ofemo the great spell caster to do in my life. i had a fight with my husband in the past which led to our breakup. I tried all i could to make him come back to me but he refuse and said it was over between us, one day i came across a testimony on the internet on how Dr. Ofemo used his spell to reunite two lovers so i decided to contact Dr. Ofemo via email and he assured me that my husband will come back to me within 48 hours after he has finish the preparation of the white magic spell.I am very glade today to tell the world that Dr. Ofemo is truly a man of his word because my husband came back to me and fell on his knees begging me to forgive him and accept him back. Do you have a problem then also contact Dr. Ofemo today via email: xxxx or his website: http://drofemospelltemple2.webs.com/ or you can call th #19
chloe711 - 2 weeks ago
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Hello friends i want to share my testimony and how grateful i'm since my lover came back to me because of the great help Lord Masuka whose email address is xxxx render to me. my boyfriend broke up with me first week of july this year because he thought i was cheating on him, he told me that his friends has been telling him that i have been seeing someone else when he is not around i tried to make him understand that his friends are lieing to him but he did not give me the chance to explain to him this was how he left me. after a month of our breakup i tried to live a normal life without him but it was very hard for me to cope then i decided to contact Lord masuka via his email address xxxx which i came across during my search looking for help how to get my lover back he cast a love spell for me and make my lover to come back to me within the period of 48hours. with this grate joy in my heart i want to say a big thanks to lord masuka he is the best spell caster and he is the best sol #20
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