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Terminating rights to allow adoption

Thomasville, NC |

my husband and i live in north carolina, my ex-husband lives in florida( not 100% sure where the only address i have is on court papers i received after he was arrested for non payment of child support). my ten year old son would like my husband to adopt him and as a family we have decided this would be the best course of husband (not bio-dad) has been supporting my son since he was five years old--financially and emotionally. the bio-dad has never paid child support (except when the irs seized his taxes on my behalf last year); he has had no contact with my son for three years; per family court he is only entitled to supervised visitation because he refuses to take anger management classes -- he has a mildly violent history; also i discovered that he was convicted of felony charges this year for selling drugs. my question--if he were to fight termination of his parental rights do we still stand a chance of terminating his rights so that my husband can adopt him? ANY help would be greatly appreciated.

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Attorney answers 1


Your adoption would proceed under North Carolina law since your are North Carolina residents and your son lives with you. Several things are in play here. One, your son may have to formally consent to the adoption if North Carolina law requires it. Generally, when a legal parent does not support a child, does not maintain a relationship with a child, and essentially "abandons" his relationship with the child, a court will terminate that parent's parental rights in a step-parent adoption. Your case sounds like a classic step-parent situation. Since your husband has really been your son's father for five years, you have an excellent chance of obtaining a step-parent adoption for your son. However, you should confer with a North Carolina adoption attorney to discuss the specifics of North Carolina law. You can find a good adoption attorney through the American Academy of Adoption Attorneys.

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