For many Texas residents, adoption is the path to much-desired parenthood. For others, it is a way of solidifying a special relationship as with a stepparent adoption. Sadly, however, not every adoption is simple and some are even contested. These situations can be challenging for both an adoptive parent and a biological parent and have the ability to impact the children involved in many ways.
Such is the situation in Utah where a new federal civil rights lawsuit has been filed by 12 biological fathers against the state itself. The list of defendants includes the Utah Attorney General’s office and two former attorney generals. At the heart of the lawsuit is the claim by the fathers that the state’s law unfairly allowed their biological children to be adopted out inappropriately. The men did not have to give consent for the adoptions and some of them did not even know about the adoptions until after they had been completed.
This lawsuit does not affect only families in Utah. The article reporting on the story indicated that pregnant women from around the country came to Utah for the very purpose of being able to give up their children for adoption without the input of the biological fathers. The suit also alleges that many adoption agencies guided the women on how to avoid participation by the fathers.
One way that both biological and adoptive parents can ensure their adoption proceedings are truly in the best interests of the child and fair to all could be to work with a private adoption attorney. Taking the time to do so could prevent problems down the road.
Source: FoxNews.com, “Fathers sue Utah over law allowing mothers to secretly give up babies for adoption,” Kelly David Burke, February 16, 2014