Skip to main content

My husband gave me Power of Attorney, do I have the right to start filing paper work on terminating his parental rights?

Houston, TX |

And yes, he wants to do this.

Attorney Answers 5


  1. You can probably start the process, if the power specifically grants this authority, but he will most likely need to be the one to make the final signature. Loss of parental rights is pretty serious and not to be taken lightly.

    Every legal matter is fact specific, and there are often nuances in every case. This is intended for comment only, and does not create an attorney client relationship.


  2. I agree with the other attorney.

    Terminating a person's rights is so serious that another person just cannot sign for that person. The person must sign himself in front of a notary.

    Normally a judge appoints a person to represent the child's interest and that attorney normally interviews the parent terminating his/her rights to make sure that they fully understand what it means to permanently terminate their parental rights.

    Harris County judges take a termination very seriously. Many years ago a superior court over-turned some terminations and re-instated some parents parental rights after the courts held that the terminations were not properly done. You can imagine how the children and the families were impacted after the parental rights were re-instated years later! No judge ever wants that to happen again so they take these terminations very seriously now. You might think the judge is being "silly" but they are actually protecting the child.

    Fran Brochstein has over 20 years legal experience & enjoys educating the public about Texas laws. She is a full-time family law mediator in the Houston area. If you found this answer "helpful" or "best answer", please select the button to show your appreciation. Please understand that this is not a personal consultation and in no way creates an attorney-client relationship. You are strongly encouraged to consult with an attorney in your county in person about your specific legal problem. You can contact her at 713-805-9591 - 7 days a week - her personal cell phone.


  3. Why does he want to terminate his rights? To avoid paying child support? The Court is not likely to approve it anyway.

    Why would YOU be involved? Even if you have the power, why not let him do? Is he incapacitated?


  4. He will need to be involved at some point unless he is incapacitated. Please note that terminating his rights does not necessarily result in him not being responsible for child support. The Judge can still order that he provide for the child financially. Also, a Court is typically not going to want to terminate parental rights (assuming there is not abuse or neglect) without knowing there is another adult ready to come in and adopt that child.


  5. A power of attorney should only be utilized when the principal is unable to perform the act themselves. Unless your husband is incapacitated or out o the contry for an extended period of time, I would not suggest you to initiate these proceedings on his behalf by using your power of attorney.

Family law topics

Top tips from attorneys

What others are asking

Can't find what you're looking for?

Post a free question on our public forum.

Ask a Question

- or -

Search for lawyers by reviews and ratings.

Find a Lawyer

Browse all legal topics