How to give up custody of your children?

UPDATED: May 17, 2011

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How to give up custody of your children?

Asked on May 17, 2011 under Family Law, Kentucky


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

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

In order to give up custody, you can go to court and re-work any custody agreement in place.  If this is not your situation and what you want to do is give up your parental rights voluntarily, then you need to obatain a “relinquishment”. 

A parent who decides to voluntarily terminate parental rights needs to file a petition in circuit court. In situations in which an unmarried mother or father is a minor, it is necessary that the minor’s parent or some other adult join in the petition. To avoid any potential for conflict of interest and to assure that parents are fully aware of and informed of the purpose/consequence of the termination proceeding, the parent shall be required to appear before the circuit court for the hearing. When only one parent has consented to a voluntary termination of parental rights, consideration shall be given to other persons having rights to the child.

If the Family Services Worker assigned to the case finds that termination of parental rights is in the best interest of the child, assistance may be given in the preparation of the petition upon approval by the Family Services Office Supervisor. The Office of the Counsel may assist in drafting and filing a voluntary termination of parental rights action.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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