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Parental Rights

Parental rights are rights given to parents to provide and protect the upbringing and education of a child. The right to choose religious direction and schooling are also included in parental rights. The most important part of parental rights would be the ability to be a part of the child's life in a family atmosphere. In some situations, parents choose to terminate their parental rights. With this choice, many questions arise. Below are just a few of the more commonly asked questions regarding parental rights that have been answered by Experts.

How can I voluntarily terminate my parental rights?

Basically, the easiest way to terminate your parental rights is to not be an active part of the child's life. You can do this by missing visitation, separating yourself from any part of the child's development. There are no laws that require you to be active in your child's life.

While it is easy to stop participating in your child's life, it is not as easy to avoid the parental responsibilities of that child. In order to be removed from your child support obligations, you will need to get a court order. This generally won't happen unless someone else is willing to take on the responsibility which would mean adoption of the child.

How do I voluntarily terminate my parental rights as a father when both parties involved agree and the baby is not born yet?

At this point, there is nothing that can be done about parental rights. The child is unborn, which means there can be no custody or support issues dealt with. Furthermore, any documents that are signed concerning custody or support for the unborn child cannot be enforced. However, the process of termination of parental rights is fairly simple. The process is known as relinquishment of custody and is explained in SECTION 63-9-310 et seq. To begin the process, you must affix the relinquishment on a document and have it notarized with two witnesses.

You may want to have an attorney draft the relinquishment to avoid any unforeseen issues. Once notarized, you need to file the document with the court in the area where the child lives. Once this has been done, the document is an enforceable tool.

Another issue that you may be unaware of is child support. You still have child support responsibilities after you terminate your parental rights. In order to end child support, you will have to get the mother to agree to termination of child support.

If an individual’s parental rights were terminated and the Child Support Unit is wanting the individual to pay child support, is the individual obligated by law to pay?

When a person terminates their parental rights, they are still obligated to pay child support. The law does require you to make child support. However, in the event the child is adopted, you could then petition the court and ask to be removed from the child support payments.

The law stipulates that the parent is financially responsible for the child's welfare, regardless of the termination of parental rights. The reason for your parental termination plays no role on the welfare of the child.

Does a father accused of rape, have parental rights to the victims child in Texas?

If the individual’s name isn't listed on the birth certificate, the court would have to allow an order to establish the individual’s parental rights. It is doubtful that any court would allow the individual visitation to the child if they are a convicted rapist. However, the court could enter an order that would legally recognize this individual as the parent if DNA testing proved paternity.

In the event the other parent re marries, if the spouse wants to adopt the child, it may be possible to have the father’s parental rights terminated with the rape conviction on their record.

Parental rights are generally never questioned or expected to change in most situations. However, there comes a time when the need to exercise parental rights will arise. Knowing your rights as a parent is paramount when being faced with a legal situation. When you need answers, you can ask an Expert for solutions to your individual situation.
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