Adopting our Nephew after Sister-in-Law Relinquished Rights to us. What happens to the next one?

Kelly - posted on 10/03/2009 ( 5 moms have responded )

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So...We have had our 5 year old Nephew(kinship placement) for a year now. After we had him for about 5 months, DHS suspended the parent's rights. Not too long after that, we found out that they were pregnant with another little boy. I asked DHS every visit, if we would get the baby as well... They never gave me a straight answer...all they told me was... "Stay prepared and we'll contact you when he's born!" About 2 months ago, the parents went ahead and relinquished their rights for our 5 year old Nephew (because they were hoping to keep the next baby). My question is...has anyone else had a similar situation? Will we get the baby from birth? I'm confused because they said the rights were "suspended" before the parents decided to relinquish... Dhs tells me that their rights were going to be terminated and that's why they relinquished so quickly after finding that out...

It's so complicated and confusing to me! I'm so thankful that we are adopting our oldest, but now that the baby was born just yesterday....I'm sooooo worried about him now!!! Any advice??!!??!

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Dara - posted on 03/11/2010

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Here is our experience, and I should say we live in the state of TX so laws could be different from state to state. The state decided after 18 months of foster care, they had reason enough to terminate parental rights with our now son. The way it works in TX, the parents have right up until the moment before they stand in front of the judge to RELINQUISH their rights. This is very different than having them terminated. If they refuse to relinquish their rights, or do not show up for the hearing, their by not relinquishing their rights, the judge will by court order TERMINATE them. Once your parental rights have been terminated you may never again be a parent. Meaning, if you as a women give birth, you do not get to see the baby, it goes to the nursery and then CPS will come and take if from the hospital and place it in a foster or foster/adopt home. If they relinquish their rights to a child (which is what you are saying in your case) that is only for that child. They will have rights to the new child and any other child they have not relinquished rights on. Many times though, CPS is closely monitoring the situation. The parents who had poor parenting skills before, still have poor parenting skills and the state finds just cause to step in Subsequent siblings more often than not end up in foster care as well. But each case is looked at for its own merits. Does that clarify anything at all? Or just cloud the waters more. And yes, if rights have not been relinquished or terminated for the new baby, communication w/CPS will be rather cryptic, on a need to know basis. - That is my experience.

Tonya - posted on 01/29/2010

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We went through it with our sibling group--had the older three then told to get ready for the baby, problem was someone in the bio-families got wind and the bio-mom went on the run with the baby when she gave birth thankfuly she was found 2 days after leaving the hospital and we brought her home, she had almost dropped a pound since leaving the hospital--so make sure you talk to the worker in complete privacy and do not let the answer out if it is yes--if they do take the new baby you will bring it home from the hospital

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I have never heard them use the words suspended to indicate that parents have lost their rights. I think they have meant visits had been suspended. Usually they use the words termination of parental rights. As far as the baby I would just follow the directions of DHS and wait. It depends on why the 5 year old child was taken to begin with (which you didn't say). If that situation hasn't changed then the chances they will take the baby are higher. They may be able to tell you more when it gets closer to time for the baby to be born. Ask DHS if you should prepare for the baby by getting a crib and baby items, maybe that will clarify your reasoning for asking.

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I fostered a baby & when his baby brother was born he was placed w/his brother & later they went to an adoptive home together. Most of the time the baby will be placed in foster care until the parents work their case plan.

Kelly - posted on 04/16/2010

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Update: After our youngest nephew was born, he was sent home w/. his bio parents and from what I've been told, they've been monitored for the first few months to make sure they are supplying him with better care than their past experiences. We are adopting our oldest nephew and unless they "royally mess up" we probably won't be seeing our youngest nephew anytime soon. It's really hard to think about his well-being every day, but we stand in Faith that God is in control of his little life!!! Thank you for all of your comments :)

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