You probably have questions about birth father’s rights in adoption in Washington, and that’s okay. It’s a confusing subject, and birth father rights in WA have the potential to shape your adoption plan.
But don’t worry if your child’s father doesn’t support your plan. Adoption can still be possible. Have you wondered, “Does the father have to give consent to adoption?” or “What happens if the father doesn’t sign the birth certificate in Washington?”
Each birth mother-birth father relationship has its own nuances, which makes birth father’s rights in adoption in Washington even more convoluted. Please speak with an attorney or adoption specialist about your questions regarding birth father’s rights in WA. If you don’t have one, you can connect with a professional about adoption birth father rights in Washington by completing our online form.
This guide offers some basic details about birth father rights in Washington, but it’s not intended as a substitute for legal advice from a professional. Please consult a professional when researching birth father’s rights in adoption in Washington.
The 3 Varieties of Expectant Birth Fathers in Adoption
Birth father’s rights in adoption in Washington can shape your adoption experience in ways you may not have anticipated, but there’s no one-size-fits-all answer. Each situation is different, so it’s best to speak with a professional before taking action.
Birth fathers generally fall into one of these three categories: supportive birth fathers, unsupportive birth fathers, and absent or unknown birth fathers.
Supportive Birth Fathers
If a birth father agrees with you that adoption is the best way forward for everyone involved, he is considered supportive. A supportive birth father can collaborate with you to create a brighter future for your child and an efficient adoption experience. A supportive birth father can be unmarried or married to the birth mother but still supportive of the adoption plan.
A supportive birth father can assist with parts of the adoption process like:
- Developing your adoption plan
- Choosing an adoptive family
- Selecting a post-adoption contact arrangement
- Making your hospital and birth plan
A supportive birth father often means you won’t face many, if any, challenges to your adoption as long as his birth father rights in Washington are honored.
Unsupportive Birth Fathers
Some fathers don’t support the adoption plan, and some even attempt to stop it. The father is entitled to contest the adoption legally, but that can create a difficult situation for everyone involved. Unsupportive birth fathers sometimes pressure pregnant women into seeking an abortion or parenting, whether that’s the right choice or not.
Fortunately, a lack of cooperation may not prevent you from placing your child for adoption in some situations. You should speak with an adoption attorney or adoption specialist to find out more about your rights and birth father’s rights in adoption in Washington.
Absent or Unknown Birth Fathers
In some cases, a pregnant woman may not know the father or may not know how to reach him to inform him about their pregnancy and adoption plan.
Though the birth father’s rights in adoption in Washington are still in effect under those circumstances, you still could be able to place your child for adoption without birth father consent. Again, please consult an adoption professional or attorney to learn whether that’s a possibility in your situation.
Does Washington Have a Putative Father’s Registry?
State law ensures birth father rights in Washington are protected, but the state doesn’t maintain a putative fathers registry to allow men an opportunity to voluntarily claim paternity of a child. A putative father is defined as the unmarried father, or a man claiming to be the father, of a child.
Have you asked, “Does the father have to sign the birth certificate in Washington for adoption to be an option?” or, “Can a mother refuse to put father on the birth certificate in Washington and still place a baby in an adoptive home?” These answers differ based on the specific details of your situation.
A putative father can levy a parentage action to claim paternity if the mother has not identified him as the father of the child. The court will review the case and decide whether the man’s claims of paternity are warranted and valid. If they are, then he must be notified of any legal action involving the child.
To get additional information about the putative father’s registry and birth father rights in Washington, please speak to an adoption attorney or an adoption professional.
Moving Forward with Adoption While Observing Birth Father Rights in Washington
The information in this guide isn’t a substitute for professional legal advice, so please discuss your situation with an attorney or adoption professional before moving forward with the adoption process. Every unplanned pregnancy is unique, and the birth father’s rights in adoption in Washington will impact your experience in unique ways.
For additional information, you can talk to an adoption attorney or adoption professional about birth father’s rights in adoption in Washington when moving forward with your adoption plan.