Parents in Sarasota and other cities throughout the US typically have a legal right to make major decisions for their child, unless they have given up their parental rights or have had them revoked. One such right is to be involved in the decision of whether or not to give their child up for adoption. In some cases, however, state laws enable birth mothers to take this choice completely out of the father’s hands, which can result in adoption issues down the line.
This is exactly what one father claims happened to him. The man was reportedly in the process of establishing paternity in Colorado when his former girlfriend went to Utah to have their child and give the newborn to her brother and his wife to adopt. The father claims that she did all of this without his knowledge and permission. The mother also told a Colorado court that this exact scenario was not her intention.
The father has suggested that the adoption without his consent is tantamount to kidnapping. A Utah court has since dismissed the adoption, leaving the question of custody up to a Colorado judge who now has jurisdiction. In addition to seeking full custody of his daughter, the man has also taken further legal action against those he believes were involved in the plot to deny him his fatherly rights. He is suing both sides that were involved in the adoption attempt, and the attorneys who represented them, for damages exceeding $100 million.
Although adoption and parental rights laws vary from state to state, being a child’s biological parent does not. This is why it can be important for fathers to establish their paternity and parental rights early. Doing so can often help ensure they have a legal voice in deciding their child’s future.
Source: The Salt Lake Tribune, “Father sues ex-girlfriend, Utah lawyers, adoptive parents for stealing custody of his daughter,” Brooke Adams, Feb. 19, 2014