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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Oklahoma
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    3

    Default Step Parent Adoption; Bio Father Incarcerated

    My son's biological father was incarcerated in Tx while I was pregnant. He has no contact with my son and has never given any support. I am now happily married and he is the only father my son knows. Can we file for adoption and terminate his rights due to not being a promising role model or possibly even abandonment. My son starts school this year and we want his name changed b4 then. There is no father on my son's bc.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    28,653

    Default Re: Step Parent Adoption; Bio Father Incarcerated

    You're in what state? Oklahoma?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Oklahoma
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: Step Parent Adoption; Bio Father Incarcerated

    Yes, I currently reside in Oklahoma. My husband is in the military.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    28,653

    Default Re: Step Parent Adoption; Bio Father Incarcerated

    Looking at the lengthy Oklahoma statute governing termination of parental rights, Oklahoma Statutes 10-7006-1.1, it does not apper that incarceration of itself is a sufficient basis for termination of parental rights. However, abandonment is, so assuming the biological father is now out of prison and has chosen not to initiate a relationship or have contact I suspect you would qualify for termination of his rights. The easiest way to effect a termination within the context of step-parent adoption is if he consents. However you would have to be cautious about requesting consent before initiating termination proceedings incidental to the step-parent adoption action, as you don't want to inspire him to start to initiate a relationship merely to frustrate the adoption proceedings.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Oklahoma
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: Step Parent Adoption; Bio Father Incarcerated

    His expected release date isn't until 2011 and last I heard his parole was denied due to drug use and refusal to submit to drug testing. However, that was almost two years ago and I have yet to inquire anything else. I know that if I ask him to sign consent he'll refuse and start trying to cause trouble for me. With my husband soon to leave for Iraq, I really don't want to have to deal with that (especially on the slight chance that he has made parole). Is there any way that I could prove him unfit, according to Oklahoma Law, while he is still incarcerated?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    28,653

    Default Re: Step Parent Adoption; Bio Father Incarcerated

    The voluntary noncontact while in prison (no letters, no birthday cards, no phone calls) may be enough - you would have to check with a local family lawyer. Although logistically more complicated, you could also bring the action for termination of his rights in Texas where intentional criminal conduct resulting in conviction and "confinement or imprisonment and inability to care for the child for not less than two years from the date of filing the petition" is grounds for termination of parental rights. (Texas Family Code 161.001(1)(Q)(ii)).

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