Can I have my son adopted without his biological father’s consent?

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Can I have my son adopted without his biological father’s consent?

My fiance’ is interested in adopting my son who is now 21 months old. He has been in my sons life since the day he was born. His biological father has not attempted to see his son and has not sent me any support since April. I have sole physical custody of him. His father did sign the birth certificate because we were married at the time. We are still legally married but were separated shortly after my sons birth. I have no address for my husband to send him legal papers. Is it possible to proceed with an adoption?

Asked on December 9, 2010 under Family Law, New York

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

As a general rule, the biological father's consent is needed for an adoption if he is/was married to the birth mother.  If no consent can be obtained, you can still terminate the birth's father's parental rights and then proceed with an adoption.  There are several grounds for terminating such rights involuntarily, and 3 of them appear to apply to your situation:  Abandonment or Extreme Parental Disinterest; Failure to Maintain Contact; and Failure to Provide Support.  At this point, you need to consult directly with a family law attorney.

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