Choosing to place a baby for adoption is a very difficult decision to make. Sometimes, pregnant women who are considering adoption but not completely set on this unplanned pregnancy option may wonder, “Can I get my baby back after adoption in North Carolina?”
This is a common question for prospective birth mothers who are curious about their North Carolina adoption rights before, during and after the adoption process is complete. However, know that you cannot get your child back after your adoption has been finalized and completed, unless you can prove that there was fraud and duress in the process. Because of this, it’s very important that you are 100 percent confident in your adoption decision before choosing this life-changing path.
If you are considering placing your child for adoption, know that an experienced adoption attorney will help you understand your adoption rights at every step in your journey, and you will be under no obligation to choose adoption unless you are sure it is right for you. The lawyers at the Parker Herring Law Group PLLC have helped hundreds of women in your situation understand the legal process of adoption and what will happen should they choose to consent to their child’s adoption — and they can help you today, too.
To learn more about your adoption rights from our experienced adoption attorneys completely for free, please call our offices at 919-821-1860 or contact us online.
While each adoption situation is unique, there are a few important things you should know if you’re wondering how to get your child back after placing for adoption in North Carolina.
Understanding How the Consent Process Works
If you are considering placing your child for adoption, know that there will be a legal procedure you must follow in order to do so. Understanding how this legal process works will answer your question, “Can I get my child back after adoption?”
First, understand that you are never obligated to choose adoption until you are confident it is right for you. Your adoption decision will not be final until you give your legal consent for the adoption, which can occur any time after your baby is born under North Carolina law. There is no waiting period in North Carolina. Until you give this consent, you will always have the right to change your mind. Nothing you say or do during your adoption process, like creating an adoption plan or finding an adoptive family, will obligate you to choose adoption if you decide you wish to parent instead.
Before you give your adoption consent, understand that the legal process of adoption is designed to make an adoption placement permanent in the best interest of the child at the center of the adoption. Therefore, if you “give a baby up” for adoption, you cannot get it back, due to laws that protect all parties involved in the adoption process.
Second, when understanding how this consent process works, know that you will have seven days after you give your adoption consent to revoke your consent and ask for your child back and then regain custody of your baby. If you wanted to follow this path, you would need to work closely with your personal adoption attorney to follow necessary legal procedures, like giving written notice to the adoptive parents. Under North Carolina law, whoever takes your consent/relinquishment to the adoption must offer you a copy of the document you signed. On the consents and the relinquishments the instructions for revoking your permission for the adoption are typed out for you. If you change your mind again after revoking your consent and then decide to place your baby back again with the adoptive parents, there will be no revocation period the second time around and your adoption decision will be final.
Deciding to give your adoption consent is a big decision to make, which is why your adoption attorney at the Parker Herring Law Group PLLC will help you understand your adoption rights after you give birth and, should you choose to place your child for adoption, your parental rights after you give up a child for adoption.
Prior to giving your consent to the adoption, you will always have the right to choose to parent, even after you have found a prospective adoptive family and given birth. However, when you decide you are ready to sign your adoption consent paperwork, the process will usually include these steps:
- Your adoption attorney will meet you at the hospital to explain your adoption rights.
- During this discussion, you can ask any questions you have. Your attorney will explain that you will have no parental rights after you give up a child for adoption and that you cannot get a child back after adoption.
- If you decide to give your consent and sign the adoption paperwork, you will have seven days to revoke your consent to the adoption. You should be offered a copy of the consent/relinquishment document you signed. During this time, your baby will be placed in the custody of your chosen adoptive family.
In North Carolina, you can give your consent for your baby’s adoption any time after she or he is born. You may be asked to sign other affidavits, which are sworn statements. These affidavits may include: an affidavit of capacity (stating that you do not have any medications in your system); affidavit of parentage (stating who you believe the father to be); an affidavit regarding military service (whether you are member of the military); and another affidavit commonly known as the Indian Child Welfare Act Affidavit (ICWA), stating whether or not you are a registered member of an Indian tribe or eligible to be.
After these seven days have passed, you will have no parental rights to your child. However, your lawyer will be available to you if you think your consent was given under fraud or duress and you wish to get your baby back after adoption, instead.
If you are considering adoption but find yourself wondering, “If you give your child up for adoption, can you get them back?” it likely means that you are not ready to make this life-changing decision and you should discuss in counseling with an objective counselor. Adoption is a difficult and emotional journey for all involved, and it is a journey that you should embark on only when you are sure it is the right path for you. The adoption attorneys at the Parker Herring Law Group PLLC will always be available to discuss your adoption rights and help you obtain any additional counseling you need as you are in this position of making the best choice for you and your unborn baby.
Understanding Your Birth Mother Rights
As a woman considering adoption for her baby, you will always have certain rights during the adoption process. First, know that you are never obligated to choose adoption unless you are confident it is right for you, and you always have the chance to change your mind before signing your adoption consent. North Carolina law also allows you a seven-day period in which you can revoke your consent, but because this process is very emotional for you and the adoptive parents, it’s advised that you work really hard to be comfortable with your decision before you place.
In addition, there are few adoption rights that you will have as you go through your adoption process:
- The right to create your own adoption plan that meets your personal needs and preferences, including what you want your hospital stay to look like
- The right to choose the perfect adoptive family for your baby
- The right to free adoption counseling and legal services
- The right to create an open adoption relationship with prospective birth parents that you are comfortable with
- The right to financial assistance (dependent upon your personal circumstances) during your adoption journey
- The right to have your medical expenses paid by the adoptive parents if you do not have insurance or Medicaid to cover the costs;
If you decide to choose an open adoption relationship in North Carolina, you will have certain birth mother rights in open adoption. Our adoption attorneys will help connect you to a local adoption agency that can mediate contact between you and the adoptive parents to ensure you receive the communication you desire in your open adoption. While you will have no parental rights after you give a baby up for adoption, you do have the right to a mutually respectful open adoption relationship in which both parties uphold their open adoption communication.
As you begin considering adoption for your unborn child, remember that you have the right to be in charge of your adoption plan and adoption decision every moment along the way. Contacting an adoption professional — like an adoption lawyer at the Parker Herring Law Group PLLC — at the beginning of your adoption process will ensure those rights are protected as you explore this unplanned pregnancy option.
Our professionals’ guidance is always available to you for free when you call us at 919-821-1860. Whether you are ready to place your baby for adoption or simply want to learn more, our attorneys can explain your adoption rights in North Carolina to help you choose the path that’s right for you.