View Full Version : Can rapist really block his victim from putting the resulting child up for adoption?
04-16-2011, 02:25 PM
I don't want to derail the other GQ thread any more than it already is. IANAL, but it's my understanding that if a woman (or underage girl) gives birth she can't put the kid up for adoption without the biological father agreeing to terminate his parental rights. Does this really apply to women who've been raped as well? How hard is it really for a family court judge to involuntarily terminate his rights (especially if he's actually convicted of the rape)? Who takes care of the child while it's "in limbo"? Does the woman have to take it home and care for it or is it put in foster care while everything is sorted out? What if at the time of birth the identity of rapist/bio-dad is unknown? If he's caught & tried before the statue of limitations runs out can he demand the adoption be "cancelled"? Could he force the adoptive parents to bring the child to visit him in prison? Does it make a difference whether it was statutory rape or forcible rape? How do adoption agencies in general handle it if the father's identity is unknown or the mother refuses to name him?
04-16-2011, 03:06 PM
I don't want to derail the other GQ thread any more than it already is. IANAL, but it's my understanding that if a woman (or underage girl) gives birth she can't put the kid up for adoption without the biological father agreeing to terminate his parental rights.In an adoption proceeding, the biological fathers rights can't be terminated over his objection, unless independent grounds to terminate exist and it's in the best interest of the child to do so. In most cases there's no legal reason to terminate the father's rights, but causing the birth of the child by the sexual assault of the mother does consitutute grounds for termination. The relevant statute from my jurisdiction:
§ 161.007. TERMINATION WHEN PREGNANCY RESULTS FROM
CRIMINAL ACT. The court may order the termination of the
parent-child relationship of a parent and a child if the court finds
(1) the parent has been convicted of an offense
committed under Section 22.011, 22.021, or 25.02, Penal Code;
(2) as a direct result of the commission of the offense
by the parent, the victim of the offense became pregnant with the
parent's child; and
(3) termination is in the best interest of the child.
04-16-2011, 03:07 PM
IIRC after the fiasco in the mid-90's where some mother used the daddy to retreive an adoption she regretted - many states have a limitation too on the adoption process; if you as a father have not asserted your rights in X years (1? 2?) then you are not much of a father and have no legal rights.
Wade through this - http://adoption.about.com/cs/adoptionrights/a/unwedfath.htm and about the 3rd page it talks about grounds for abandonment. It doesn't say what happens if you are in prison and otherwise unable to establish contact or provide support, but I suspect that does not enhance your chances of preventing loss of paternal rights.
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