Contested Adoption

If an adoption is being contested by a birth parent wishing to exercise their parental rights, we can help. During the adoption process, the court must determine whether the birth parent, or parents, must consent to the adoption. A contested adoption requires experienced counsel to protect your rights and ensure that the law is correctly applied.

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Contested Adoptions In North Carolina

In North Carolina, a contested adoption is most often one in which an unmarried birth father does not consent to the adoption taking place. This can create a complex and difficult situation for all parties involved, including the birth mother, the adoptive family, and the child.

Contested adoptions can be emotionally challenging and legally complex, and they may involve a variety of legal issues such as paternity, parental rights, and adoption procedures. It is important to work with an experienced adoption attorney to navigate these issues and protect the rights and interests of all parties involved.

When Can A Birth Father Contest An Adoption?

North Carolina law does not always require a birth father to give his written consent in order for an adoption to take place. The decision to place a child for adoption can be made by an unmarried expecting mother alone. However, a birth father can contest an adoption if he meets certain criteria. Under North Carolina law, in order to contest an adoption, a birth father must have done the following before the adoption petition is filed:

  • Acknowledged paternity,
  • Regularly and consistently communicated, or attempted to communicate, with the expecting mother, and
  • Provide reasonable and consistent financial support to the expecting mother.

If a birth father does not attempt to communicate with or support the birth mother during her pregnancy, then he may be unable not to contest the adoption.

Birth Father Rights In North Carolina

In North Carolina, the law provides certain rights to unmarried birth fathers who acknowledge paternity and are involved in the pregnancy. If an unmarried birth father meets the above criteria and does not consent to the adoption, he may be able to contest the adoption and assert his rights as a parent.

The birth father may be able to contest the adoption by filing his objection with the court and participating in court proceedings. The court will consider a variety of factors in determining the outcome of a contested adoption, including the best interests of the child, the involvement of the birth father in the pregnancy and in the child's life, and the financial and emotional support provided by the birth father.

If an unmarried birth father is successful in contesting the adoption, the adoption will not be able to proceed.  He must separately pursue legal action to secure custody or visitation rights. However, if the court determines that the birth father’s consent is not required and that the adoption is in the best interests of the child, the adoption may proceed despite the birth father's objections.

Work With An Experienced Adoption Attorney

It is important for all parties involved in a contested adoption to work with an experienced adoption attorney to navigate the legal process and protect their rights. At Dempsey Law], we have extensive experience in contested adoptions and are dedicated to helping our clients find solutions that are in the best interests of all parties involved. If you are facing a contested adoption in North Carolina, we encourage you to contact us to learn more about how we can help.

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