Getting Answers Regarding Birth Father’s Rights in Adoption in Hawaii

Birth father rights in adoption in Hawaii are protected by state law, and that could impact your adoption plan. If you’re concerned about how the birth father will react to your choice, please know you’re not alone. Birth father rights in HI can be a concern for many birth mothers considering adoption.

When facing an unplanned pregnancy and considering adoption, it’s normal to wonder about the role your child’s father will play. Maybe you’ve asked yourself, “Can a child be adopted without the father’s consent?” or, “What happens if the father doesn’t sign the birth certificate in Hawaii?” Those are important questions that deserve answers.

Every relationship with the birth father is unique, and there’s no one right answer when it comes to navigating the birth father’s rights in adoption in Hawaii. Adoption can still be possible even when the father doesn’t provide consent, but you will need help from a professional when processing how adoption birth father rights in Hawaii may impact your future. To connect with one today, please complete this online form.

In the guide below, we discuss some basic information about birth father rights in Hawaii, but please don’t consider what you read here as legal advice. Please consult with an adoption attorney or adoption professional when researching the birth father’s rights in adoption in Hawaii.

Understanding the 3 Types of Prospective Birth Fathers in Adoption

Every birth mother–birth father relationship is unique, so there’s no single correct answer when considering the birth father’s rights in adoption in Hawaii. Details are important, so be sure you talk to a professional about your situation.

Though every situation is different, birth fathers can be grouped into the following three categories below.

Supportive Birth Fathers

When a birth father is whole-heartedly in support of the birth mother’s choice to put a child up for adoption, it can be beneficial for everyone involved. Supportive fathers can be married to the birth mother, or they can be unmarried but still supportive of the birth mother’s decision.

A supportive birth father means that there’s a great opportunity for cooperation in the best interest of the child. That’s because both parents love their child and want them to have a bright future, so they can partner to give their kids the life they want for them when the father supports the mother’s choice; birth father rights in Hawaii usually aren’t an issue.

A birth father who is supportive also has the chance to play a role in the process, such as being involved in the selection of the adoptive family for their child. He may also be engaged in other collaborative aspects of the adoption experience, like the post-adoption contact arrangement or birth plan.

Unsupportive Birth Fathers

Some birth fathers oppose the birth mother’s decision and may attempt to prevent the adoption from occurring. That can be detrimental to the birth mother and the unborn child. It doesn’t always mean adoption is impossible, though.

Unsupportive birth fathers sometimes try to influence the birth mother’s choice by pressuring her to seek an abortion or keep the baby. Legally, a father can contest the mother’s adoption plan, though it may not serve the best interest of the mother or baby.

Even when the birth father is unsupportive, you may still be able to pursue adoption without consent. It’s best to discuss your situation with an attorney or adoption specialist so you can better understand your rights and birth father’s rights in adoption in Hawaii.

Absent or Unknown Birth Fathers

In some cases, the birth mother may not know who the father is through no fault of her own. Or, the birth mother may know the identity of the father but be unable to locate him or notify him of her pregnancy and adoption plan.

In those situations, the birth father’s rights in adoption in Hawaii are still protected by state law. That doesn’t mean adoption is impossible, though, as there still may be a pathway to adoption without the father’s consent. That is determined by the specifics of your situation, so speak with an adoption professional to understand your options.

What’s the Putative Fathers Registry, and Is There One in Hawaii?

Hawaiian laws protecting birth father rights in Hawaii establish that a putative father is a man who is the father or claims to be the father of a child. Usually, the term refers to a birth father who isn’t married to the birth mother at the time of the child’s birth.

You may have found yourself wondering, “Does the father have to sign the birth certificate in Hawaii for adoption to be an option?” or, “Can a mother refuse to put the father on the birth certificate in Hawaii and move forward with an adoption?”

Those are complex questions that lack simple answers. However, many states (including Hawaii) have a putative fathers registry to help document claims of paternity. But a claim alone doesn’t mean a birth mother can’t proceed with her adoption plan, as it may not be honored by the court. The putative father’s registry provides a mechanism for putative fathers to establish a custodial, personal, or financial relationship with the child.

Once a claim is made, the putative father must be notified of any legal proceedings regarding the child, and the putative father will have a chance to contest the birth mother’s adoption plan if he wishes. However, putative fathers must also consider how that can impact the mother and baby. Adoption is often best for everyone involved, and a contested adoption can lead to unnecessary stress and anxiety.

If you have lingering questions about the putative father’s registry and birth father rights in Hawaii, please discuss your situation with an adoption attorney or an adoption professional for additional clarification.

Is it possible to place a child for adoption if you don’t have paternal consent in Hawaii?

Though birth father’s rights in adoption in Hawaii require paternal consent for adoption, there are circumstances in which you can place a child without the father’s consent. Again, the details matter, and every situation is different. Be sure to consult with a lawyer or adoption professional before moving forward.  

Respecting birth father rights in Hawaii is an important part of the adoption process, but don’t be discouraged if the birth father is unsupportive. Adoption may still be an option for birth mothers when paternal consent isn’t given. Birth father rights in Hawaii are complex, so please discuss your plans with an adoption professional or attorney before moving forward with respect to the birth father’s rights in adoption in Hawaii.

Where to Get More Information About Birth Father Rights in Hawaii

Again, we reiterate that the information in this primer should not take the place of professional legal advice. Every situation is different, and laws regarding the birth father’s rights in adoption in Hawaii can be applied differently from situation to situation. 

If you’re a birth mother seeking more information about birth father rights in Hawaii before moving forward with your adoption plan, please speak with an adoption attorney or adoption professional about birth father’s rights in adoption in Hawaii.

About the Author

Lindsay Arielle has been a proud birth mother since placing her son for adoption in 2011. Her post-placement agreement has always been an open adoption. She loves the time she gets to spend with her son and his parents during visits. Lindsay truly believes that for herself and her family, adoption has been a blessing, and she enjoys writing about spiritual healing for birth mothers.

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