What Do You Know About Father’s Rights In Adoption At S.C

What Do You Know About Father's Rights In Adoption At S.C

What Do You Know About Father’s Rights In Adoption At S.C – Is giving a baby up for adoption without the father’s consent in South Carolina possible?, Does the birth father have to agree to adoption?, What happens if a mother wants to give a baby up for adoption but the father does not?.

These are all common questions that pregnant women considering adoption in South Carolina ask, especially if their relationship with their baby’s birth father is complicated. If this is your situation, our law firm can help. We can discuss with you birth father rights in adoption and how they apply to your circumstances, as well as guide you through any necessary legal steps involving your baby’s father as you move forward with your adoption process.

Because this can be a complex area of adoption law, it’s important to contact our professionals as early as possible in your adoption journey for our free and confidential legal representation.

What are the Birth Father Rights in Adoption in S.C.?
Often, women considering adoption ask, “Does the father have to give consent for adoption in South Carolina? Can I give my child up for adoption without the father’s consent?”

This is a complicated area of law. Just as you have rights as a prospective birth mother, a prospective birth father also has certain rights under South Carolina law — but they will be determined by several different circumstances.

If a birth father is married to a birth mother, his consent or relinquishment must be obtained or his rights must be terminated by the court.

A birth father who is not married to the birth mother can block an adoption only if:

  • The father openly lived with the child or the child’s mother for a continuous period of six months immediately preceding the placement of the child for adoption, and the father openly held himself out to be the father of the child during the six-month period; or
  • The father paid a fair and reasonable sum, based on the father’s financial ability, for the support of the child or for the expenses incurred in connection with the mother’s pregnancy or with the birth of the child, including, but not limited to, medical, hospital, and nursing expenses.

The birth father’s rights are also affected by considerations such as whether his efforts to support the birth mother were thwarted. He must use prompt and good faith efforts to demonstrate his commitment to the child.

If you are placing a child for adoption who is more than six months old, the birth father’s rights and responsibilities will be slightly different. Attorney Jim Thompson can explain the South Carolina birth father adoption laws in your individual situation.

In either case, even though consent of the birth father may not be required, he is entitled to receive notice of the adoption proceedings. This can be accomplished by personal service or, if he cannot be located, by publication in a newspaper.

Do I Have to Identify the Baby’s Father?
Sometimes, prospective birth mothers ask, “Is adoption possible without knowing who the father is?”

In South Carolina, a birth mother has a right to privacy and cannot be compelled to identify the biological father if his consent to the adoption is not required. In other words, unless the birth father has lived with the birth mother for six consecutive months immediately preceding the placement of the child for adoption, or he has contributed a fair and reasonable sum of money for pregnancy-related expenses, his consent to the adoption is not required and the birth mother is not compelled to identify him.

In Evans v. South Carolina Department of Social Services, our Supreme Court held that to compel a biological mother to identify the birth father would undermine the confidentiality that is a foundation of the adoption process and would violate the mother’s right to privacy. At the Law Offices of James Fletcher Thompson, we will always respect your privacy and will explain in detail the process ahead of you if there is an unknown father in your adoption.

So, what exactly happens in an adoption when the father is unknown? When a birth mother does not know the identity of the birth father or she declines to reveal his identity, the Responsible Father Registry comes into play.

What is the Responsible Father Registry?
South Carolina has devised a method to protect an unknown or unidentified birth father through the South Carolina Responsible Father Registry. The registry is a way through which a man who has potentially fathered a child with a woman to whom he is not married can ensure that he receives notice of an adoption action involving the child.

In order to establish his right to notice, a man must record his name in the state-maintained database — the registry — along with the name of the woman. Then, if and when an adoption action is filed regarding a child of the woman who is named in the registry, the law group will require the party initiating the action to notify the registered man of the proceedings so that he may come forward to assert his rights to the child if he so chooses.

As a prospective birth mother, you will bear no responsibility for identification in the Responsible Father Registry. Only a potential father can take these steps to protect his parental rights.

You can always contact us for free online or by calling one of our adoption counselors at 864-680-8038 or toll free at 1-800-796-8373.

A Mother Finds 2 Biologically Relative Young Adopted Children


A Mother Finds 2 Biologically Relative Young Adopted Children – Grayson, 2, and Hannah, 1, are siblings by adoption, but after a long journey to unravel the mystery of their birth, their Colorado mother discovers that they are siblings too. She explained growing up in Alabama, she always imagined herself being a mother. But when she had trouble conceiving during her marriage, then going through a divorce in her early 30s, she decided to become a foster parent.

Her application was finalized on Mother’s Day 2016, and she opened her doors to several short-term placements.

When her caseworker asked if she was interested in fostering to adopt a baby boy born with drug exposure, she made a quick decision to pick him up from the hospital just hours later.

“I fell in love the moment I saw him and held him in my arms,” she explained. “Welcoming a brand new baby boy into my home with less than a day’s notice was scary but the best I have ever chosen.”

She said she was told by adoption workers that the boy’s birth mom left the hospital shortly after giving birth and left false information behind so she could never be found.

Page named the newborn Grayson, and finalized his adoption on May 25, 2017.

“He is beautiful inside and out,” Page said. “He attracts people to him everywhere we go with his sweet smile and calm nature.”

She took a break from fostering for several months as she and Grayson adjusted to their new life together, but when a caseworker called her once again out of the blue months later with another newborn, Page felt a strange calling to agree to take on another baby.

The days-old girl, named Hannah, was born in the same hospital as Grayson, with the same drug exposure and medical complications. Even though the listed name for Grayson’s biological mother didn’t lead to anyone, the name listed for the baby girl was the same, as was the mother’s date of birth.

“I started having strong suspicions that Grayson had siblings the day I accepted the baby girl into my home,” she explained. “I knew something was special about this little girl and that she might be a link to his family that we thought we would never know when I adopted him less than two weeks before.”

Hannah’s mother was interested in visits, and while Page held back information about her son Grayson, an initial conversation with the birth mother seemed to fill in additional pieces of the puzzle.

A DNA test done between Grayson and Hannah ultimately revealed the pair are biologically siblings.

“I was devastated for Grayson that he had just been left at the hospital with no information about his family and who he was,” Page said. “To have this little girl help us unravel huge pieces of the puzzle about his life and change his story forever was a huge blessing.”

She said it was even more special that they were placed in the same home, as she understands the significance of understanding one’s birth story.

“The love between them is amazing and they deserved to stay together,” Page said. “I felt God clearly brought them together for a reason despite all the odds that could have kept them apart forever.”

Page is now preparing to adopt their 5-month-old younger sibling this year.

The Countless Rewards of Adopting a Child


The Countless Rewards of Adopting a Child – Having a new child come in to your family is one of the greatest events in life. Regardless how it happens, it is wonderfully fulfilling and also challenging. Usually however, a new family member is not financially rewarding. Kids are just expensive. However, for parents who adopt, there may be an even brighter silver lining to adding a new family member, and it starts with your tax return. There are some very lucrative tax benefits, tax credits and other financial benefits which may be available to adoptive parents under the individual income tax return rules.

Last year I had a client with a special situation where they adopted three siblings all at once. Bang, instant family. They were very happy with their new family and also surprised to find out that not only were they rewarded with three wonderful new family members, but they also instantly qualified for well over thirty thousand dollars in totally refundable adoption tax credits.

While the adoption credit is no longer refundable, you may still be eligible for a credit of up to $12,970 if you’ve adopted or are planning to adopt a child this year. Yes, you read correctly, an income tax credit of over twelve thousand dollars related to adoption costs — in addition to other benefits. Also, if there is one other true statement about adoption, it is typically a very expensive undertaking. So tax credits, potentially a big one, is often very well received and deserved.

The adoption tax credit is available for adopted children who are under 18 years old and who are not the step-child of you or your spouse. The credit also applies to a child any age if they are physically or mentally incapable of caring for themselves.

Standard U.S. Adoptions

In cases other than special needs adoptions, the credit is based on qualified adoption expenses. Said another way, the credit is computed-based on the amount of adoption expenses incurred to complete the adoption — the more that is spent, the higher the amount of the tax credit. Qualified adoption expenses are defined as reasonable and necessary expenses directly related to the legal adoption of a child under 18 years old, or physically or mentally incapable of caring for himself or herself. These expenses may include:

  • Adoption fees
  • Court costs
  • Attorney fees
  • Travel expenses
  • Meals and Lodging
  • Other expenses

Taxpayers cannot claim any expenses that were reimbursed.

There are some additional limitations on who can claim the adoption credit and how much credit they qualify for. Specifically, there is a taxpayer income limit, as with many credits, that limits or eliminates the credit for high income taxpayers. The full Adoption Credit is available for taxpayers with an income of up to $194,580. If your income is between $194,580 and $234,580, you may qualify for a reduced amount of credit. If your income is greater than $234,580 you will not be eligible for the credit. Because the credit is nonrefundable, you may only use the amount of credit necessary to reduce your income tax liability to zero. If your tax liability is less than your credit, you may carry over the remaining credit each year for up to five years or until you use it up. Most taxpayers who qualify for the credit eventually get to take it all over that six-year period, including the first qualification year and five carryover years.

For a domestic adoption, you can claim the credit the year after the expenses are paid, or the year the adoption is final, whichever comes first. For international adoptions, you must wait until the adoption is final to claim the credit.

Special Needs Adoptions

Special needs children are determined by the state or local child welfare departments. Most adoptions from the U.S. foster care system are considered special needs; all children who receive adoption subsidy or adoption assistance benefits have been determined to have special needs. If you adopt a special needs child you may qualify for the full amount of the adoption credit even if few or no adoption-related expenses were paid. Said another way, for special needs adoptions, and that includes multiple family member adoptions, the adoption credit is the full $12,970 per child regardless of the amount of expenses incurred.

International Adoptions

If you are adopting internationally, the qualified expenses include the travel costs to the foreign country and lodging, food, and transportation while there. Many countries require the prospective parents to come to the country and be interviewed first then they must come back to the country for the adoption. The costs of all necessary trips to complete your adoption are eligible for the credit. You must wait until the adoption is final to claim the credit for expenses paid if you are adopting internationally.

Employer Assistance

To help taxpayers with adoption, the IRS also allows employers to offer a tax-favored employee benefit, the Employer Assistance Adoption Program. This program allows employers to pay up to $12,970 in pretax income towards an employee’s adoption expenses per child. If your employer funds any portion of your adoption expenses through this program, you will still be eligible for the credit on any expenses you incur over what your employer reimburses or pays directly.

Adopting a child is a wonderful event. It can be a more wonderful event if you get some cash back on your tax return. If you are adopting or have adopted in recent years, be sure to understand the complex tax credits and rules and get all of the tax benefits you deserve — and even go back and amend if you missed them in the last three years. The adoption process is complicated but once completed is very rewarding. The tax rules can be viewed the same: very complicated but at the end of the day with tax credits and possibly employer assistance, can be very financially rewarding.

Adopting A Child I Never Thought Of Before


Adopting A Child I Never Thought Of Before – When I was in my 20s, I had a friend who had just found out he was adopted, and he was very angry. I remember thinking that it was nice of his parent to tell him. Some people don’t tell their kids that they were adopted. Some people never find out they were adopted. I suggested to him he should give his parents a chance and talk about his birth parents. When I thought about what he was going through, I thought that I would have liked to know if I had been adopted, and I would probably want to know my birth parents.

When my toddler was adopted, I thought from the other side. I was the one that was giving up my parental rights to another family. I was hopeful. I thought it was a good thing for my family (myself and my two children).

Prior to having to be in that situation, I remember thinking to myself I couldn’t imagine how anyone could give their child up for adoption, especially after my first child was born who was by then a teen. I couldn’t imagine how someone could go through pregnancy and birth and just give their child away. So that was my pre-conceived notion at the time.

But when I think about when it happened to meI was just hopeful that I was making the best decision possible. I didn’t really make the decision, it was made for me by Children’s Aid society but in some ways it felt like my decision to let them go to give them a better life.

The adoption was a result of child welfare getting involved.
When my kids were apprehended, I was devastated. It felt like my heart was being ripped from my chest. I remember talking to the worker and begging for my kids to be placed together. I think when kids are placed into the foster care system it’s very hard, it’s better for them to be placed together. Because when you’re taking the kids from the family that’s already a split, and then splitting the kids again is hard. From the children’s side, that would be 3 times as hard. I just lost my children, but they are losing their family. I was lucky that they went to the same home.

Reflecting on it, I believe that what my kids went through was much harder than what I went through. I know it’s hard for children’s aid to keep kids together, but I think that’s important.

Before the adoption, when they were in foster care, having a relationship with them was very hard. With my teen it was easier because she could communicate. I remember one time when both my girls came in and my toddler (then 2) had had her hair done and she said, “Mommy did it” (she was talking about the foster mom at the time). I felt like I was stabbed. It tore me. That was really hard.

At the time I didn’t really think about it but I think my oldest had the hardest time of all of it. She lost her mom, she became a surrogate mother to her sister. She probably felt a big responsibility on her shoulders. These were things I didn’t think about at the time, I was just more thinking about me.

Obviously, I appreciated every moment spent with them but every time I had to leave, and they didn’t come home with me it was hard.
The CAS was fabulous. They were very generous with me. They gave me a lot of chances. They were rooting for me. I think they gave me a little over two years to get my s**t together. But at the end of two years, I was still using.

They told me that my toddler would be adopted. But it wasn’t until I was actually in the courtroom, and the judge was telling me that it felt real. I don’t remember the wording; I just remember crying through the whole thing. I remember being very respectful, saying ‘yes your honour’ and answering any questions the judge had.

I was using at the time so don’t have a lot of memories of that time. I was shell shocked, it was almost like PTSD, from the point of my kids leaving the house. I remember them walking down the hall and knowing that they were leaving. From then to being told by the judge that I was giving up my rights as a parent, I was just trying to get through each day.

At the time, my best friend had a child of the same age.

We were pregnant at the same time. She gave birth in June and I did in August. She was going through the same thing, she lost her child as well. I don’t like saying I lost my kids because I am responsible for what happened. I didn’t lose my kids, I was the catalyst for them leaving. Children’s Aid didn’t do it because of them, they did it because of me. I am responsible for their actions.

My friend’s adoption was a closed adoption and the last day she saw he daughter, was the last day she saw her daughter. She didn’t know where her daughter went, or to which family. The family that adopted my toddler kept a connection. I met the mom of her adopted family, she told me I could send cards, she told me she would send pictures.

For my friend it was almost like a death, she mourned her child. I was lucky because I got to keep a connection. I think having the connection is important, it’s important for the parents and the kids.

The only thing that made me uncomfortable was I was watching my youngest grow up and it was without her permission. I felt I was invading her privacy as a person, maybe she doesn’t want that connection. I think I got the best of the deal because I was able to watch her grow up.

To me, I don’t consider my teen to be adopted. I got lucky because the adopted parents also took my teen daughter in but I was able to keep seeing and visiting with her. But I didn’t see her as being adopted, I just saw her as being fostered and she was still my daughter she was just living with another family. *

Mothers of 9 Adopted Babies


Mothers of 9 Adopted Babies – Monica Soraya Hariyanto does not want the children she adopts to lose their relationship with their biological parents. When she was first contacted by a pregnant woman who hoped that her baby would be adopted, she felt that this was the way outlined for her.

WITHOUT the presence of additional family members, Monica Soraya Hariyanto’s house was actually crowded. She has four children, three of whom still live with her.

Automatically, with the presence of six babies who were adopted by this 41-year-old woman, her residence in Cilandak, South Jakarta, became increasingly boisterous. Monica has adopted the babies since March 2020.

All newborns. The first was named Bianca Calista Prameswari, born March 18.

Followed by Tristan Naraya Abimanyu, Scarlet Alexandra Kamaniya, Syeikha Abriana Resyakila, Dallas Arsyanendra Bagaspati, and Beverly Kanisya Mikandira.

Monica gave the names in discussions with her husband and children. “I like to give names that smell like Sanskrit,” said Monica when contacted by Jawa Pos last Friday (21/8).

The first name was the result of a discussion with the family, while the middle and last name were given to Monica herself.

Apart from the six babies, Monica also plans to welcome three more babies. Two were born in August and only arrived this week at Monica’s house. Another one is expected to be born later this month. So, in total he added 9 children.

“As long as I have sustenance, it is okay to want 12 (children),” he said.

You could say that the babies were not wanted by Monica, but came alone. It started when the founder of the Indonesian Bidadari Community Organization received WhatsApp from an unnamed mother.

The mother asked Monica if she was willing to adopt a child. At that point, Monica felt that everything had gone the way of the Creator so that somehow she believed in her and replied to her message.

From there, several other mothers also contacted Monica, up to a total of six people. The first mother he called. At that time she was seven months pregnant.

“So, I take care of these babies from the womb,” he said.

Monica helps from gynecology to childbirth costs. The backgrounds of the people who contacted him were almost the same: they experienced economic difficulties.

There are also those who are left by the baby’s father. There are those who are pregnant under age, but they don’t have to pay for an abortion. “They don’t really convince me too much,” he continued.

Once the baby is born, the parents immediately hand it over to Monica. The babies are then added to Monica’s family card. However, the act remains in the name of the biological mother.

” There are those who no longer care about their children. I wrote the same deed. But I said, I took care of them until they were successful, but I wasn’t the one who gave birth to the world, “said Hariyanto Duryat’s wife.

Her husband, who is a businessman, is very supportive, fully supporting Monica’s wishes. The Madurese-Manado woman also has dreams of establishing an orphanage.

However, for now, feeling that she can’t really afford it, Monica adopted some of the first babies into her family. “I want to be a part of these children’s lives and treat them like my own,” he said.

Even when she welcomed the babies into the world, Monica was not so awkward. Instead, he was excited to prepare various supplies for the babies. Making cribs, clothes and toys.

It’s really like having another child. And, he is grateful. Even though the babies’ parents are deprived, all are born healthy and cute.

Monica certainly doesn’t take care of the babies alone. Each baby has a babysitter. “I personally last took care of a baby seven years ago,” said Monica, referring to her last child.

Monica continues to take care of the babies, even though it’s not 24 hours. From this experience, Monica is also getting more requests from parents who want to leave their babies. Sometimes she received 20-25 messages from mothers who were pregnant.

There are also parents who may not have a child even though they have been married for years. And, finally got interested in adopting the baby he is currently caring for.

However, of course he couldn’t accept them all at once. Nor could he suddenly hand over the child he had adopted to someone else.

Because of this, Monica returned to her long-standing desire to establish an orphanage. “It would be nice if I have an orphanage, because I happen to have a social foundation too,” he said.

If you have an orphanage, he continued, it will be easier to bridge between parents who can’t afford to care for babies and parents who want to care for babies. For this, Monica will set certain conditions.

She should look directly at the homes of people who wish to adopt and make sure they have permanent jobs. That way, the children’s life can be guaranteed.

One of Monica’s principles when adopting the babies is to make sure they stay in touch with their biological parents. ” I don’t want to make these children hate their parents. I have to take care of the children’s feelings, ”he said.

Later he will convey that their biological mothers have extraordinary courage. “Until they can give birth to the world,” he said.

Real Stories Behind The Adoption Process


Real Stories Behind The Adoption Process –  Ababy girl, just two days old, is glimpsed in profile, strapped into her car seat. She’s so tiny it nearly engulfs her. She’s leaving hospital, but not with her birth parents. A court has just granted social workers an emergency protection order because of fears she is at immediate risk of harm: this child is one of the few each year who are considered to be in such danger that they are removed from their mother soon after birth.

The little girl’s older brothers are already in care. Lorena and Ray, their birth parents, are devastated. Their plight is barely imaginable: parents will shudder to watch. But a new Channel 4 series, 15,000 Kids And Counting – referring to the number of children needing to be adopted in the UK every year – gained unparalleled access to the highly sensitive child protection and adoption process, showing the rigorous procedures social workers must follow.

The number of children being adopted from care is going up: 3,980 were placed with adoptive families last year, compared to 3,470 the year before. But the number in need of adoption has doubled in the past five years. The longer children are left with parents who are unable to care for them, the more vulnerable they become: multiple foster placements don’t help either. So as children get older, it becomes harder to find adoptive parents willing to take them on. People fear that parenting an older child who has suffered trauma is a challenge they may not be up to. And to put it bluntly, older children, particularly in sibling groups, are not as instantly appealing as a baby.
Deborah Woodcock, head of children’s social care at Stockport council, was instrumental in allowing the documentary makers to film some of the most painful interactions between social workers and families. She is keen to emphasise that adoption is not the default assumption when parents are struggling.

“We’re not starting with the idea of adoption: we start with the idea of permanence, because children do best who have lifelong meaningful relationships,” she says. Social workers’ primary role “is to work with the family to achieve that permanence for a child. For the vast majority, that’s with the birth parents.”

But the support services available to parents who find themselves being set targets for progress in a range of practical and emotional areas can vary depending on where they live. And these are frightened, vulnerable people, who are often struggling to parent while coping with domestic abuse, mental health problems and drug and alcohol misuse. Ray and Lorena have been told that they have to undertake very specific psychological therapy for 12 and 24 months respectively before they can be assessed again for their fitness to care for children. That therapy hasn’t been made available on the NHS, so they are bitter and confused about what they could feasibly have done to keep their daughter.

“I did this film because I want people to see what social workers are all about,” Lorena says. “You’ve got no control. My boys were in care for ages before I got told I needed to do that two years of therapy. By then I was pregnant again so there was no time for me to finish it in time to keep my baby. Plus, there’s no way could we afford it ourselves, and the NHS wouldn’t pay for it, so what chance did we have?”

Are tailored, intensive services always on offer, I ask Woodcock, to help parents have a decent shot at addressing their difficulties well enough to be allowed their children back?

There’s a long silence. “We are mindful of the fact that services are meeting increasing demand in a climate of diminishing resources,” she says finally, before pointing out that no judge would agree for a child to be adopted if the only reason for parents’ inability to provide a good home was a lack of support to help them do so.

The child’s interests must be at the centre of every decision made, Woodcock stresses, and in some cases time constraints mean it’s hard for parents to make the enormous changes that are urgently required. “We have to focus on the child’s needs as well as the parents’ capacity to change,” she explains. “We have to keep in mind that those first two years of life are crucial for a child’s development.”

For the little girl in the film, there’s a positive future. She has been reunited with her brothers, who had already been placed with Emma and Rob (not their real names): the couple are hopeful that the adoptions will be finalised soon. Though they chose not to be filmed, Emma speaks to me on the phone, the soft gurgle of her now one-year-old daughter just audible. Emma’s happiness at having a brand new family shines through.

Having already had the chance to see the programme, she and Rob have had an unusual insight into the lives of their children’s birth parents. “It was very difficult, watching,” she says quietly. “Lorena and Ray are people, they’re not unknowns. But at the same time, it was reassuring to see that they loved the children.” She and her husband will show all their children the film, she says, “which will be very important to them in understanding what happened before their adoptions”.

It’s still early days but they are starting to settle well, says Emma, though they still need lots of reassurance about what happened in the past. “They’re a lot calmer than when they arrived,” she says. “More relaxed, and they’re talking to us now about their lives in the present. They say ‘our house’ now, not ‘your house’.”