What do I do if my babys mom wants me to sign away my parental rights? 19 Answers as of May 13, 2011

My baby’s mom doesn’t want me to have anything to do with my child. She wants me to sign over all parental rights. I will not agree to this. She wants her partner to be her father.

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John E. Kirchner, Attorney at Law
John E. Kirchner, Attorney at Law | John Kirchner
You do not have to sign away your rights; But, strictly speaking right now your only "rights" are the right to go to court and have a judge decide what specific rights and responsibilities (i.e. child support) you should have. Once that is done, the child could only be adopted by a step-parent if you fail to live up to your responsibilities. Unless and until the Mom actually marries her current "partner", he won't be able to adopt as a step-parent regardless of what you do.
Answer Applies to: Colorado
Replied: 5/13/2011
Reeves Law Firm, P.C.
Reeves Law Firm, P.C. | Roy L. Reeves
Tell her to hug a tree and then spend time with your child. If you want to be Daddy, you have the right to be daddy. I get asked at least 4 times a day, "what do I have to do to terminate?"
Answer Applies to: Texas
Replied: 5/10/2011
Fox Law Firm LLC
Fox Law Firm LLC | Tina Fox
You have the right not to sign over your rights! If she pursues, you need to hire an attorney immediately to protect your rights as a father. I would not recommend that you attempt to handle this on your own.
Answer Applies to: Illinois
Replied: 5/10/2011
Beresford Booth PLLC
Beresford Booth PLLC | S. Scott Burkhalter
In Washington State, you can have paternity established and seek visitation.
Answer Applies to: Washington
Replied: 5/10/2011
Glenn E. Tanner
Glenn E. Tanner | Glenn E. Tanner
Don't do it if you don't want to do it.
Answer Applies to: Washington
Replied: 5/10/2011
    Law Office of Curry & Westgate
    Law Office of Curry & Westgate | Patrick Curry
    You do not have to agree to terminate your rights and the court will not force you.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 5/10/2011
    Lori C. Obenauf LLC
    Lori C. Obenauf LLC | Lori C. Obenauf
    If you have not legitimated the child, then you need to do so and seek joint legal custody and visitation rights. You will also be required to pay child support. No one can force you to relinquish parental rights. If, however, you fail to establish a relationship with the child and you fail to live up to your obligation to pay child support, a court may find that you have lost your opportunity interest in being a parent and terminate your parental rights.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 5/9/2011
    Beaulier Law Office
    Beaulier Law Office | Maury Beaulier
    As a general rule, you cannot simply terminate parental rights unless the termination is demonstrated to be in the child's best interests. Whether it occurs would depend on the particular facts of the case. It would also require a court hearing and, of contested, a trial.
    Answer Applies to: Minnesota
    Replied: 5/9/2011
    Cody and Gonillo, LLP
    Cody and Gonillo, LLP | Christine Gonilla
    You can refuse & bring motions for custody & access.
    Answer Applies to: Connecticut
    Replied: 5/9/2011
    The Davies Law Firm, P.A.
    The Davies Law Firm, P.A. | Robert F. Davies, Esq.
    You do not have to agree to this. Call me, I can assist you.
    Answer Applies to: New Jersey
    Replied: 5/9/2011
    Seattle Divorce Services
    Seattle Divorce Services | Michael V. Fancher
    In Washington generally parental rights/responsibilities cannot be signed away without another parent adopting the child.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 5/9/2011
    Law Office of Joseph A. Katz
    Law Office of Joseph A. Katz | Joseph A. Katz
    Too bad for her. File a Paternity action. Check with your local Clerk's Office for information, or consult and experienced, local Family Law Attorney.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 5/9/2011
    Michael Anthony Wing, P.C.
    Michael Anthony Wing, P.C. | Michael Anthony Wing
    Don't sign it. Petition the court for visitation and start or continue paying support but use checks or money orders, so you can prove the payments. Stay well.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 5/9/2011
    Law Office of L. Paul Zahn
    Law Office of L. Paul Zahn | Paul Zahn
    File a Petition to Establish a Parental Relationship and a request for custody and visitation orders. If you are in my area, contact me for a free consultation.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 5/9/2011
    Warner Center Law Offices of Donald F. Conviser
    Warner Center Law Offices of Donald F. Conviser | Donald F. Conviser
    Under those circumstances, don't sign anything for the mother. File a Paternity case to establish your custody and visitation rights and your child support obligation. Pay money to contribute to your child's support on a regular basis, even if there isn't an order requiring you to do so. Visit and communicate with your child on a regular basis.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 5/9/2011
    Pisarra and Grist
    Pisarra and Grist | David T. Pisarra
    You need to file a Paternity action and protect your rights immediately. Also you can read my book, A MAN'S GUIDE TO CHILD CUSTODY available online and as an E-Book on my website.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 5/9/2011
    Law Office of Richard B. Kell
    Law Office of Richard B. Kell | Richard B. Kell
    You most certainly do not have to agree with that. In fact, I would strongly recommend* not *doing it. But in order for you to have legal rights to see your child and be an active part of your child's life, you need to have a custody and visitation order in place. I've seen so many father's fail to do this because they didn't want to go through the hassle and expense of going to court. Many custodial parents will then hold the child "hostage" from the other parent, and it becomes that much harder to get things straightened out down the road. Hopefully, this will not happen to you.
    Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
    Replied: 5/9/2011
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