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FamilyAttorney, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 1366
Experience:  Owner, attorney in private practice, appellate attorney, GAL & former trial lawyer, licensed for 37 years
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My husband and I have guardianship of our grandson. His

Customer Question

My husband and I have guardianship of our grandson. His lived with us since birth, and we received guardianship 2 years ago. The father has seen him less and less and now it's been a month. We have never received child support. Our daughter will allow us to adopt, but how hard will it be to terminate the fathers rights so we can adopt?
JA: Because family law varies from place to place, can you tell me what state this is in?
Customer: California
JA: Has anything been filed or reported?
Customer: No
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: We really want to adopt him.
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  FamilyAttorney replied 10 months ago.

Hello and thanks for using Just Answer. I’m a licensed attorney with 36 years’ experience in family law and appeals. I look forward to helping you today.

At the end of this session, I will ask you to please rate me as that’s the only way I get credit for helping you. It is NO EXTRA CHARGE to you but it’s important to me! Thanks!

Please note:This is general information and is not legal advice. No specific course of action is proposed herein, and no attorney-client relationship or privilege is formed by speaking to an attorney on this site. This is for educational purposes only and you are advised to seek your own legal counsel. The attorney herein is licensed in NY only.

Also – I will be typing my answer for you so I’ll be back asap.

Expert:  FamilyAttorney replied 10 months ago.

In California, the father can voluntarily decide to sign over his rights by consenting to the adoption. If you don't think he's going to do that, there is a procedure for filing a Petition to Terminate Parental rights. You must file a Petition to Terminate Parental Rights if he won't sign. The most common reason for a judge to end the parental rights is that he has abandoned the child. But abandonment is when a parent leaves the child with anyone who is not the other parent for 6 months or more, so there is not enough time here for abandonment purposes. He would have to keep failing to see the child. the fact that he never paid child support will be against him too but mostly it's about his failing to see the child.

There are other ways to end parental rights.

Another scenario where parental rights are terminated is during a juvenile dependency court proceeding. If one or both of the minor’s parents have substance abuse problems, are involved in criminal matters, are found to be abusive, or otherwise unfit, the Juvenile Court can terminate one or both parents’ rights. When parental rights have been terminated, the government becomes the legal custodian of the minor child. This allows the minor child to be placed for adoption without the biological parent’s consent. Keep in mind that termination requests are not always granted.

Your best bet is to contact a family lawyer who does adoptions in your area in Cal. You may want to approach the father first and see what he has to say, or ask your daughter to talk to him. If that doesn't work, you may want to find a family lawyer in your area to help you work towards terminating his rights.

I'm happy to give you names of lawyers in your area if you'd like. You're not ready to adopt unless all of a sudden dad is willing to give consent to an adoption. If he gives consent, he terminates his rights. You don't have to allow the parents to see the child if you adopt but you CAN allow the parents to see the child if you agree to do so.

Remember, I'm happy to give you names of adoption lawyers in your area. I do this as a service for my customers here. Not all family lawyers do adoptions either, so I'd have to look for you.

Does this help you and answer your question?

Expert:  FamilyAttorney replied 10 months ago.

If you'd like a phone call, we can do a phone call as well, that's up to you but I wanted to offer it.

Expert:  FamilyAttorney replied 10 months ago.

Thank you for letting me help you tonight.

I am more than happy to answer additional questions based on this one if you want. Let me know if you want me to help you find a lawyer in your area.

I hope this helps and clarifies. If you could, I'd appreciate it if you can rate me when finished. If you need additional information please let me know. Best of luck to you!

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I would rather answer additional questions than have you rate me negatively, so I appreciate the chance to do that for you. Thank you and best of luck to you!

Expert:  FamilyAttorney replied 10 months ago.

Hi, just checking in to see if you still need help with your question and if my answer was helpful for you or if there is any more information that you need. Thanks!


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