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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2009

    Default Termination of Parental Rights in Pennsylvania

    State: Pennsylvania

    A little background: My daughter's father and I were together for 3 years, 2.5 of those were filled with nothing but abuse. Last June he pushed me down the steps in our house and that night when they did bloodwork in the ER that I discovered I was pregnant. That was my wake-up call. I moved out the next morning, filed for and was granted a temporary restraining order.

    Present Day: I am now the mother of a beautiful, healthy, 3-month-old little girl and am her sole provider; I'm interested in keeping it that way. Paternity has not been established as he never signed AOP papers and neither of us has requested a DNA test through the court. I've been researching the PA laws in regard to grounds for termination of parental rights and have found the following that pertain to my situation:

    Failure to Establish Paternity

    In the case of a newborn child, the parent knows or has reason to know of the child's birth, does not reside with the child, has not married the child's other parent, has failed for a period of 4 months immediately preceding the filing of the petition to make reasonable efforts to maintain substantial and continuing contact with the child and has failed during the 4-month period to
    provide substantial financial support.

    He has not yet seen our daughter, inquired about her, or contributed a single cent towards her care. She will be 4-months-old at the end of this month at which time I plan on filing a petition to terminate his rights. Can someone give me any background on how this process works? I've contacted a lawyer who in turn told me to contact our Child Welfare Office once she turns 4 months, and to contact him again after that if a problem should arise.

    Thanks in advance for anyone willing to offer any insight and/or advice!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Behind a Desk

    Default Re: Termination of Parental Rights in Pennsylvania

    You appear to be reciting language from 23 Pa.C.S.A. 2511 - part of the adoption code. That's a provision you would cite in support of voluntary termination of the father's rights during the course of step-parent adoption proceedings.

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