For those seeking to start or expand a family, adoption can prove to be a viable, exciting and ultimately rewarding option. However, the adoption process can be somewhat difficult to comprehend due to a multitude of complex legal procedures.
Fortunately, a dedicated and experienced legal professional can guide you through the process and answer all of your questions.
Today’s post will continue to explore various aspects of adoption in Texas, and attempt to clarify any common misperceptions.
(Please see “A Brief Examination of Adoption Under Texas Law – I” for more information.)
What legal processes do the biological mother and father have to perform in order to voluntarily terminate their parental rights?
Typically, both of the biological parents will need to sign legal documents entitled “relinquishment of rights.” These documents expressly communicate the couple’s desire to place the child up for adoption/terminate their parental rights to the court.
The relinquishment of rights must be signed willingly after the child is at least 2 days old and typically cannot be revoked for at least 60 days.
During these 60 days, the court will likely make its ultimate determination regarding the termination of parental rights.
What happens if only one or neither party agrees to the termination of parental rights?
Parental rights will only be terminated if the court finds that such an action (and a subsequent adoption) would be in the best interests of the child.
Involuntary termination of parental rights typically occurs in the following circumstances:
- The biological parent has been consistently absent from the child’s life, provided little or no support, and a fit and otherwise stable individual in the life of the child is willing to adopt them
- The biological parent is unfit to care for the child due to neglect and/or abuse
This topic will continue to be explored in future posts ….
This post is for informational purposes only and is not to be construed as legal advice.
Stay tuned for more from our Ft. Worth family law blog …
What to Expect in Texas Family Law Court (Texas Bar Association)