Adoption helps numerous couples who are unable to have biological children start families of their own. Most people view a finalized adoption as something that is set in stone. This simply isn't true.
Consent to an adoption needs to be clear and concise in order for the adoption to be finalized. Even after the finalization of the adoption, consent can be reversed in certain circumstances.
It's important that you understand these circumstances if you are considering adoption so that you will be prepared for every possible outcome. A family law attorney can walk you through the finer points.
Best Interest of the Child
Consent to an adoption can be reversed by the court if a judge deems that the action is in the best interest of the child. This type of reversal typically comes at the request of the adoptive parents.
Some adopted children and their adoptive parents are simply unable to establish a positive and healthy relationship with one another. A lack of strong parental connection could be detrimental to the development of the child.
A judge will weigh many factors when determining if reversing an adoption would lead to better circumstances for the child in question.
Fraud or Duress
Consenting to an adoption is a major decision. It's critical that all parties involved in the adoption understand the choice they are making, and have agreed to go through with the adoption of their own free will.
A child's birth parents could petition to have an adoption reversed if they feel their consent was given fraudulently or while they were under duress.
A judge will review the facts surrounding the giving of consent to determine if coercion, threats, or misinformation were used to manipulate the birth parents into giving up their child. If these circumstances are proven to have existed, the judge will deem the birth parents' consent null and void.
Because giving a child up for adoption is such a big decision, the legal system provides birth parents with a small window of time in which they can change their minds after the adoption has been completed.
The time frame allowed for refusal of consent varies based on the state in which the birth parents live.
No reason or evidence must be provided by the birth parents if they choose to reverse their consent within the allowed refusal timeframe.
It's essential that an experienced family law attorney be brought into the adoption process as quickly as possible. The guidance of a family law attorney can help you navigate any issues of reversed consent that may arise during the course of an adoption.