How do I go about terminating my son’s absent father’s paternal rights?

UPDATED: Nov 23, 2012

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How do I go about terminating my son’s absent father’s paternal rights?

He is on the birth certificate but has never paid child support. Has not seen my son in more than 5 years and he is only 7.

Asked on November 23, 2012 under Family Law, Washington


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

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

The fact is that you cannot unilaterally terminate your son's father's rights. He would need to be a willing party. Even if he is, there would need to be court hearings, counseling, etc. Of course since so much time has elapsed since their last visit together, that would be in your favor. However, the court will have to weigh many factors and determine just what is in the best interests of your child.

At this point, you should consult with an attorney and see if they can begin communication with your daughter's father to determine the liklihood of their agreeing to the termination of parental rights.

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