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What should Georgia men consider if they may be fathers?

This blog has previously discussed various aspects of the adoption process in Georgia. For example, we have discussed what parents who are adopting children may have to do, as well as the various ways that adopting parents can handle the procedure.

We have also touched on the other side of adoptions, which is what happens to the rights of the child's biological parents. In many adoption cases, these rights have already been terminated, either because the biological parents are dead, or through legal proceedings. However, in some cases, the rights of biological fathers may be implicated when a child is put up for adoption.

A few weeks ago, we talked about what Georgia law requires when it comes to notification of biological fathers during an adoption. While these rules require that the father be notified of adoptions when the parties placing the child know about the father, there are steps a man can take to help ensure he is notified in such cases if he suspects he is the father of a child. One of these is to have himself placed on the "putative father registry." When a father is on the registry, he will be notified of a potential adoption if he has acknowledged paternity or taken some steps to show he believes he is the father.

It is important to remember that simply being put on notice of an adoption does not mean any specific outcome will automatically result. The father needs to take affirmative steps if he wishes to exercise his parental rights or object to an adoption. In such cases, men who believe they may be biological parents to children born out of wedlock should consider speaking with a family attorney who may be able to help them understand and pursue their rights under Georgia law.

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