need help terminating father of my child's rights in NC

Lindsey - posted on 05/20/2015 ( 7 moms have responded )

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I want to terminate the rights of my almost 9 yr old daughter. He hasn't seen her since she was less than a year old. My husband wants to adopt her and I want her to have our last name too. Anyone can help me to make the process easier. NC requires that I find the father but I don't have a clue where he is and really don't want to look! Someone told me that I can file a motion of abandonment and that would help to where I wont have to look for him. We don't have a lot of money but I really feel that this needs to be taken care of.

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Ev - posted on 05/20/2015

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THe only way you can terminate a parent's rights is in the following situations:
1) State laws on abandonment.
2) Parent is a danger to the child.
3) The parent is agreeable to such happening.

You can not force a parent to give up their rights unless there are laws in the state or country that allow for abandonment during a certain amount of time with no contact of any kind or with other circumstances. If your state requires you to find the other parent then you have to go to a lawyer who might be able to get this listed in the papers of the place you live for a certain amount of time until court date and if the parent does not show up the judge will determine accordingly on the case (not all states do this). You can not require the rights to be terminated unless the child is in danger with the parent. You can not force this either unless the other parent is agreeing to this and the judge is also okay with it.

You must have a lawyer. It does not happen over night. You need to be patient.

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 05/22/2015

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Did you ever have a custody agreement in place? Did you ever attempt to get him involved with the child?

You cannot arbitrarily determine that he cannot have rights to his child. Only the legal system can do so. Get an attorney.

ETA: Abandonment means that you have to meet certain conditions. If, at any time, you have denied your ex access to the child, for any reason, you cannot claim abandonment.

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Dove - posted on 05/22/2015

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If your daughter does not know that the man raising her is not her biological father... how are you going to explain the adoption to her? If she was raised w/ the truth she would be more than capable of understanding it. She should be getting some basic sex ed by now anyway, so understanding that one man helped create her and one man is helping raise her would still be an easy concept. I don't tolerate the concept of lying to one's child very well.

Regardless of the lying or not the ONLY way you are going to get anywhere in this process is to get a lawyer and talk to them vs. a bunch of random women on the internet.

Raye - posted on 05/22/2015

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You really need a lawyer. Any name change or adoption must either have the consent of the non-custodial parent or the court must be satisfied that the non-custodial parent has abandoned the minor child.

I don't see what the big deal is with the child having a different last name. She is at an age that she can understand she has a different birth father. She probably has friends in school whose parents are divorced and one or both parent remarried. The only confusion I think she may have is why you didn't tell her sooner. Let her know that she is loved by your husband, and he has been (and will continue to be) her father in his heart, which is more than just in name.

Ev - posted on 05/21/2015

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I can understand your worries about what kind of life he lives and if it is really true that he is a drug addict since you call it a good source you hear from you do not know where they are getting their information. The problem is this: Even though he has not been on connection with you or her over time, what if he decided to suddenly come into the picture and wants to know his daughter? You have basically kept him from using his parental rights by changing phone numbers, address, etc so he can not find you. He could also say that you intentionally kept the child away from him. Be it the case or not, it would not look good on you if he decided to push the issue. But since there has been no contact with him, you still have to follow the law to the letter to get this the way you want it if it can go that way. Until you have absolute proof that he is a danger to this child in hand to give to a judge, his rights will not be terminated based on a "good source" saying he is a drug addict or your feelings on the situation. You would not be allowed to force his hand either to give up his rights. You also have to know for sure what NC law is on abandonment and not go on the word of someone who tells you one thing or another. Only a lawyer can tell you what is what on the laws of custody.

I do not understand why you do not tell her why she has a last name. Its simple. Tell her that her father who helped to create her is her father and that is where her name comes from. You do not have to go into more than that until she is older. Also, she is going to ask about her bio father as she does get older and may even want to see him of her own choice and asking though its up to you depending on how things go if he sees her or not and the courts. My niece never knew her bio dad at all. SHe was a teen when she found out and she to this day has never met him though before she got out of school she was talking how she was going to go meet him. It never happened. My sis regrets not telling her sooner.

As for last names, what does it matter that its different? THat is not what gives her love and lets her know she is cared for. There are a lot of families out there that are blended and the kids all have different last names....the dad's last name on mom's side and the dad's name on the dad's side. his and her kids that is. Only theirs would have the same last names as some of their silbings. You said its been 9 years so she is beyond the age of bein really confused. Such confusion as you are explaining is more for a toddler or younger child.

Really, the last name is not what counts here but how much love she gets from the parents and family she does know.

Lindsey - posted on 05/21/2015

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My husband and I have talked about it years ago, and we just want her to have our last name. She has never met her biological father and knows nothing about him. She only knows that my husband has been her daddy since day one. He is the one that had the suggestion of adoption, and I feel as though that is a brave thing to step in, fill the shoes of another man that never wanted to be in her life, and has been there with her through her medical conditions, her school activities and just everything that a father should be to a child. She has questioned why she has a different last name and I avoid the question because I feel as though the time is not right, and with all the issues that she has with trying to fit in at school and other social situations, I do not want her to feel as though she was never wanted. I also feel that she is too young to understand the situations that I delt with with her father. . He is addicted to several drugs that last I heard from a good source, and he was pretty verbally abusive the last time I talked to him and that was almost 9 years ago. He had threatened me and I decided that it was the last straw. I moved, changed my phone number, and lost all contact with him and his friends. I did not want her to grow up in a drug infested environment.

Michelle - posted on 05/21/2015

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Get yourself a lawyer. They will know that laws where you are.

ETA: Why does your husband have to adopt your daughter?

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