A Change to Utah’s Adoption Law (Part 2 of 5)

by Norris Law Group on March 11, 2014

20512556_sIn our previous installment, we introduced the case of
In re Baby B, in which a man who conceived a child with a woman in Colorado was not made aware that the woman put the child up for adoption in Utah.

Neither the woman nor LDS Family Services could get the man to sign away his parental rights. In fact, this helped aid his fear that the woman would go to Utah to give birth to the child and put her up for adoption. The man filed a paternity action in the Colorado Courts on February 15, 2008. Baby B was born prematurely in Utah 2 days later. On February 19, 2008, a Utah couple filed a petition for adoption of Baby B. On February 20, 2008, the mother relinquished her rights to Baby B. in a Utah Third District Court. Later that day was a Colorado hearing regarding the paternity action started by the father. The mother informed the court that she would be unable to attend because she was out of town visiting a sick relative. She did not disclose that she had already given birth and terminated her rights.

Utah’s Adoption Act requires a father’s consent for adoption, if he was unaware of qualifying circumstances. There are four qualifying circumstances in the Adoption Act that may “arise at any point during the time period beginning at the conception of the child and ending at the time the mother executed a consent to adoption or relinquishment of the child for adoption.” These qualifying circumstances are:

 (i)    The child or the child’s mother resided, on a permanent or temporary basis in the state;

(ii)   The mother intended to give birth to the child in the state;

(iii)  The child was born in the state; or

(iv) The mother intended to execute a consent to adoption or relinquishment of the child for adoption:

1. In the state; or

2. Under the laws of the state.

 Our examination of this case continues in the next installment.

Attorney Graham Norris and his associates at the Norris Law Group serve the residents of Utah County and throughout Utah in the area of divorce. Contact them today at 801-932-1238 or online for a free consultation.

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