Private Adoption Contracts and Potential Legal Issues

Some of the more pressing issues that cause problems for adoptive parents involve the legal complications that a private or independent adoption may cause with the child, press and the biological parents. One particularly complex issue is when the birthmother places the child up for adoption and the birthfather becomes involved in the process.

Release of Parental Rights

Some issues with adoptions occur through the lack of release of parental rights. The child has two biological parents that must give up parental rights before another family may adopt him or her without immediate issues. If the father is unaware of the adoption or not told about his child, he or she may have a right to take custody when the birthmother gives the youth up. Legal rights of the father exist and may complicate adoption matters when he is not part of the process until he is made aware of the adoption through the media or another party that explains the matter to him.

Birthfather Legal Issues

The rights of biological fathers remain one aspect of adoption that many agencies do not consider when proceeding with the procedure with the birthmother. If she did not inform the father that the child exists, he would not know until the matter becomes public or someone contacts him. Through these events, a paternity test may become necessary to prove that he is the father. Then, the legal issues arise in whether he has the right to take custody when the birthmother relinquishes her rights as a parent. Some states may enact a timeframe where the father is able to take custody or may remove him entirely from the process initially.

Private Adoption and Agencies

If the birthmother is the only involved party in the adoption, she may cause a problem when not information the birth father. However, a private adoption may also cause issues if an agency is not part of the process. The company or organizational involvement is often necessary to clear the adoptive parent of possible problems such as abuse, neglect or criminal history. Any qualifying matter that could cause complications may arise through an investigation. However, without using an agency, the mother could encounter future legal problems that may even include the lack of reacquiring the adopted child if she wants him or her back.

The use of an adoption agency is legal within all states in the country. The birth and adoptive parents go through all processes with guidance and help. Preparation for the transfer of rights and the child occur through the agency workers. Counseling about alternatives to adoption usually happens with the agency to ensure that the mother or both biological parents are aware of the possible issues. This also happens with the adoptive parents, so all parties understand the situation and how to proceed. It is important that an agency has an involvement in the adoption to mitigate the possible damage of a person to person transfer of the child.

The Contract for Adoption

When a parent initiates a contract for adoption, it is generally necessary to follow through to prevent possible damages. The paperwork may specify the possible outcome if the mother or father breaches the contract through failing to follow through with the adoption process. The counseling and education about the adoption usually happen before the final contract is available for signing. Many private adoptions will have provisions in the contract for payment to the parents or a complete lack of contact with the biological mother or father. This normally generates parental connections with the youth and excludes the experience with the birthparents.

Legal issues with the contract occur when the mother or father is unable to continue with the adoption or violates the terms by entering the life of the child at some point. Other legal concerns may exist if the birth parents do not use an agency. This could invalidate an adoption if it is not through the necessary legal channels of the state. Then, the contract, the process and the adoption itself may face a reversal of additional problems. It is important to contact a lawyer to ensure the valid private adoption process.

Private Adoption Contracts with a Lawyer

For any contract, the birth parents should have a lawyer present or to analyze the paperwork. There may exist certain provisions or terms that the birth mother or father may not want as part of the process. The lawyer may also need to amend the document for a better outcome for all involved parties.

Provided by HG.org