How to terminate parental rights?

Can you post as a fan question please?

I’m wondering if there’s anyone from Texas that would know how I’d go about having my sons biological fathers rights terminated. We’re in Texas but the bio is in Washington state. He’s on the birth certificate, court ordered to pay child support but never has aside from $100 when my son was a baby. He was in prison when my son was born. Has only ever met him once when he was a baby. He’s turning 12 soon. Anyone have any legit experience in this? Going back home to do this isn’t an option right now. Yes I’m married and have been for 11 years. He’s been my sons father since he was literally a baby. Medical and everything is in my husbands name.


Look up abandonment laws for both states, he may have already given up any legal right if it’s been over 2 years and no contact.

Ask a lawyer if he still has any legal rights. They can check state laws for you. If so petition family court to terminate rights so he may be legally adopted by your s/o. Or just keep sole custody.

I live in wa state you will have to put an ad in the newspaper in the city he lives in if he hasn’t responded ded in thirty days you will be able to … has to be q legal ad though

I’ve looked into this in another state, NY, and an attorney explained it’s rare. Otherwise all the deadbeats would terminate and not be legally obligated to support their children. The state would have to finance many more children. If the courts deem him unfit and he agrees, or I was tolld to try “abandonment of a minor child” in order to accomplish it. As in the father can easily contact child or see child but has not for a certain period with no explanation of why-uncertain on the time frame I believe it was 3 Mon or more but could be wrong. Regardless, you’ll need a family attorney and it is costly even if bio dad cooperates.

How can your husband insure your child? Thought only parents on BC or in certain cases grandparents could add child to a policy?

Every state is different. Many law firms have free legal advice. I’d contact a few firms and start there for the most accurate answers. So sorry you’re going through this❤️

You do not have to go back home to do it. You file for abandonment and step parent adoption in the state the child resides in.


I just went threw this a little ovwr a year ago. I forgave all past and any future childsupport and the donor aigned off with no fight. But it cant be done with out an attorney anymore. I would start by calling attorneys. Good luck

I live in idaho and adoption here by step parents can’t be done unless the bio is willing to sign rights over. But again that’s the state of idaho. It also took about 6 months and 2500 dollars

I’ve had to go through the termination and adoption process here in the state of Texas, what my husband and I did was get in touch with a family lawyer, had the paperwork drawn up and we waited for the bio father to sign the papers. It was a year long process even though the bio had no insurance for my daughter, nor was he on the birth certificate, he was only deemed father via DNA and child support. He eventually signed the papers and we went to court about 4 months after the paperwork for termination, and the paperwork for the social study for the adoption was all submitted. The bio didn’t have to be present either during the court hearing since he had voluntarily signed away his rights. But that’s all for the state of Texas. I’m not sure how Washington does it though. Also if you have petitioned a termination of rights and it’s been 2 years and he has refused voluntarily signing the termination and it has been over 2 years of no contact you can petition to have his rights signed away by a judge without him being present to do so. Best bet would be to get yourself a family lawyer, present your case to said person and go from there. I hope it all works out for you, especially since it’s been well over 12 years of him not seeing your son.

1 Like

I just went through this with my son’s biological father. Every state is different. We were in Tennessee at the time. Per the abandonment laws in Tennessee we were able to get his rights terminated and my husband adopted him. It wasn’t an easy or fast process but definitely necessary. I started by talking to an attorney and she told us what we needed to do.

He may sign his rights over, inturn that stops child support from accruing.

Check if the courthouse has a self help office or if youre employed with a larger company most have legal services.

Step parent adoption. Most judges aren’t going to just terminate rights unless someone else is stepping up.


Since you have established residency there, I am pretty sure you can file with the courts there, and since you are custodial parent, Bio Dad will have to do all business regarding child, in Texas.
Definitely talk to a lawyer, most will give 1 hour consults for free.

Check with an attorney-it shouldn’t be hard to terminate if you both agree. You may also look into the abandonment thing.

I’m a family law paralegal here in texas. The state of texas will not bastardize a child unless there is serious abuse. He cant just sign his rights over.there has to be someone willing to step up to parent the child. Like if you got remarried or someone wants to adopt him. Then the state will handle it. If he meets certain criteria. If theres a court order already in place, you can not claim abandonment. My suggestion is to find a family law attorney and get a sit down consultation and give him alllll the details. It’s not something you can do in texas without an attorney anyways.

Idk about Texas but in arkansas if no child support is paid and no physical or verbal contact for 12 consecutive months parental rights can be terminated

If you have a college nearby and there’s a law school attached to it, ask the professors at the college how to go about it. A lot of time you can get colleges to help you out as it gives the law students a chance to get “hands on” experience.