Birth Father Consent in Adoption: Does Your Partner Need to Agree to the Adoption Plan?

By June Lawhorn

Facing an unplanned pregnancy can be overwhelming, whether you are in a committed relationship or single. On top of your changing body, you are faced with the logistics of how to move forward and what role your baby’s birth father plays. You are not alone and you have options. If you aren’t ready for parenthood or this isn’t what you envisioned, adoption can allow you to provide your baby with a loving future. With open communication, you and your partner can decide if adoption is the right choice. Ultimately, your well-being and your baby’s future are the top priority.

Adoption Choices of Colorado, a non-profit adoption agency, has resources for every stage of your adoption journey. With free, confidential counseling, you can explore all of your options and make an informed choice.

What is Birth Father’s Consent for Adoption?

Deciding that giving up baby for adoption is a big decision. In Colorado, like many other states, the birth father’s consent is crucial for adoption. If you are married, or your baby was born within 10 months from the end of your marriage, then your husband is a “presumed father”. This means that the law assumes that he is your baby’s father. 

If this isn’t the case, a DNA test will exclude him from parental rights. Your baby’s father can then be recognized in one of two ways. They can self-identify and acknowledge their paternity or they can be confirmed with a DNA test. 

Legal Requirement of Birth Father Consent for Adoption 

Once your baby’s paternity has been established, you will need to come to an agreement about how to move forward. Maintaining open communication with your baby’s father is essential to complying with Colorado’s Uniform Parentage Care Act. As a birth parent, they are afforded equal parental rights. In most situations, you will need them to agree before you can place your baby for adoption. Once they have done so, an adoption agency can assist you with the process. Navigating your options can be difficult but Adoption Choices of Colorado can help you decide which choice is best for your baby. 

Exceptions to Birth Father Consent

In certain circumstances, you can begin the adoption process without the birth father. You can move forward without them when:

  • Their rights have been terminated
  • They abandoned the baby for a year
  • They have not provided support for a year.

If you are in one of these situations, you can decide what is best for you and your baby independently. This may feel like a difficult decision but utilizing the guidance and support of a local adoption agency can help. They can help you weigh your options and navigate the legal aspects of placing your baby for adoption without the birth father. 

Navigating Birth Father Consent with Adoption Choices of Colorado 

When you decide on giving up baby for adoption, you can begin to utilize the adoption services available. The Colorado adoption process has several steps, all of which are free for birth mothers. You can receive help with medical expenses such as prescriptions, hospitalization, birthing classes, and delivery cost. Because it is important for you to feel safe and secure, you can receive help with living expenses. Taking advantage of these resources can help you have one less concern over the next few months.

Your adoption agency will assist you with navigating the legal requirements of adoption and developing an adoption plan. You will receive counseling and decide what kind of adoption you want to have. Then you will be connected with adoptive parents for your baby. Once you have delivered, you have post-adoption resources available to you. This might be financial assistance so you can recover from your delivery or joining a group for birth mothers. 

Discussing your feelings, concerns, and hopes for the future is crucial for making an informed decision. Adoption has a lasting impact for you, the birth father, and your baby. Engaging in shared decision-making allows you to feel confident about your choice. Counseling services provided by Adoption Choices of Colorado can help facilitate these conversations and provide emotional support.

Contact Adoption Choices of Colorado for Support in Choosing Adoption

Choosing adoption Colorado is a loving decision that demonstrates your commitment to providing the best future for you and your baby. You do not need to navigate the complexities of birth father consent and the adoption process alone. Maintaing open communication with your baby’s birth father is vital when weighing your options. In most cases, they will need to provide consent before you can begin an adoption plan.

At Adoption Choices of Colorado will support you every step of the way. This can look like going over your options or assisting you in the adoption process. We can provide you with unplanned pregnacy resources for your pregnancy and after. When you are ready to discuss your options, reach out to Adoption Choices of Colorado

Works Cited

  • “What Is Paternity and How Do I Establish It in Colorado?” What Is Paternity and How Do I Establish It in Colorado? | Colorado Legal Services, Colorado Legal Services, 10 Jan. 2023, www.coloradolegalservices.org/node/362/what-paternity-and-how-do-i-establish-it-colorado#:~:text=If%20you%20were%20married%20at,law%20to%20be%20the%20father. 
  • Williams, Tolison &. “Adoption: What Are an Unwed Father’s Rights to His Child?: Denver Law.” Adoption: What Are an Unwed Father’s Rights to His Child? | Denver Law, Tolison & Williams, Attorneys at Law, 14 July 2022, www.denverfamilylawmatters.com/blog/adoption-unwed-fathers-rights.

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