Custody and visitation rights cases are very dependant on the law in each state and the way each county judge may approach your particular case. Perhaps no other area of law is so peculiarly local as this is. Because of that, you really should talk to a local attorney to find out what your rights are, what the law says, what the local judge's approach may be, and what you can and can not do in your situation. This is also the one area of law where a decision made today can have very long-term consequences so it is important that you have your side heard and considered. You need to talk to a local Custody Law attorney who deals with your kind of case on a regular basis in your local court. You can search the Avvo website list of attorneys or call your local attorney's Bar Association and ask for a referral to a Custody Law or Domestic Relations attorney near you. But act quickly because for every legal right you have, there is only a limited amount of time to take action in court or your rights expire, so don't waste your time getting to a Domestic Relations or Custody Law attorney and finding out what your rights are. If this answer was helpful, please give a “Vote UP” review below. Thanks for your question and good luck. Ron Burdge, www.BurdgeLaw.com
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Congratulations on your sobriety, new marriage and new child. I imagine the road has been quite difficult for you and your children.
The answer to your question depends on what you signed and the legal proceedings regarding the children while they have been out of your care. I am guessing that the "adoption papers" you signed was actually a waiver of parental rights. Otherwise, it could have been any number of documents that were part of pending legal proceedings that were going on at the time.
If what you signed was a waiver of parental rights, then you only had ten days to change your mind. Unfortunately, the likely answer to your question is no, you cannot regain custody of your children. If you are not sure what you signed, then keep contacting the case worker or her supervisor to provide you a copy of the document(s) you signed. If you are not physically present in Georgia, it may be difficult to obtain a copy or information since you cannot prove your identity over the phone (as opposed to any person calling to find out about a minor).
If you confirm that you signed a waiver of your parental rights, then the document states that you waive any future information of the children's lives. As such, family and children services will not be able to you provide you any additional information about the children, including if they were adopted.
I imagine that these events have been devastating and I highly encourage you to speak with a counselor to help you through this heartbreaking loss. I also encourage you to keep working on your sobriety, your new baby, your marriage and your studies.
A success story! So many women never climb out of the hole you once found yourself in; you should be very proud of yourself. I am going to assume that there was an adoption that went through and was finalized at some point in time. You should have been represented by an attorney during the DFCS proceedings, if the adoption was pursued through DFCS. You might want to contact that attorney.
The bad news, though, is that there are very specific time limits on when you can attack the adoption, after the fact. The law does not want the children to be going back and forth from one family to another. If you really want to try and get your children back, you will almost certainly need to hire an attorney to press your rights and IMMEDIATELY! Good luck to you with your new life. I hope that your thoughts about trying to get your children back does not deter you on the upper trajectory of your life.
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I congratulate you on turning your life around.
You don't say what state the adoption may have been in, but Georgia has very short time periods to change your mind. Once ten days go by, it's too late, and there is a statute that forbids any challenge after a certain period.
Since it sounds like this could have been in another state and your post is not clear as to dates, talk immediately to a lawyer in the state where the adoption happened.