Legal Question in Family Law in North Carolina

In the state of NC does a mother have to agree in order for a father to sign over parental rights?

Asked on 3/15/12, 7:58 am

1 Answer from Attorneys

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A father cannot just "sign over" his parental rights. What are you trying to accomplish? If the child is to be adopted by someone else, then the mother and father must both consent if they intend to voluntarily terminate their parental rights and a new couple is going to adopt. If the mother's new husband wants to adopt, then I assume the mother is still retaining custody and only the father needs to consent to the termination of his parental rights.

While the mother can seek termination of the father's parental rights IF the grounds for termination exist, this is typically done in the context of another person seeking to adopt the child. Moreover, the father just cannot decide he doesn't want to support the child anymore and terminate his parenal rights. It does not work that way.

If you are the parent, then I would pay with a consult with a family law attorney who is familiar with adoptions and termination of parental rights.

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3/15/12, 4:11 pm

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