Can you voluntarily give up your parental rights?

On Behalf of | Jan 27, 2022 | Divorce

As a father of a child, there may be instances where you don’t want to have parental rights. For example, if you know that the mother is planning to get remarried or is married, you may want to terminate your rights to allow the new spouse to take over parentage.

Sometimes, there are circumstances that make people question if they want parental rights over a child, and it’s okay to ask if there is a way to give them up. In Florida, it’s typically not allowed for a man to voluntarily give up their rights unless there is a pending adoption. For example, if you and the mother decide to give your child up for adoption, you may both need to sign over your parental rights. If a stepparent wants to adopt your child, you may need to terminate your rights voluntarily to allow that to happen.

Are you able to give up your parental rights to avoid child support?

Generally speaking, you can’t give up your parental rights just to avoid child support. The truth of the matter is that two people are responsible for bringing a child into the world, and both are expected to provide for them.

While there may be cases where a mother and father disagree on having a child, it is the child’s right to receive financial support from both parents once they are born. Unless a stepparent or adoptive parent is stepping in, the likelihood that you can give up your rights is low.

What should you do if you have more questions about your parental rights?

If you are in a unique situation or want to give up your rights to your child, it’s important to understand the legal implications as well as what you can or cannot do in these circumstances. It may be worth speaking with the mother about your opinion and what you’d like to have happen, so she may talk to her spouse or an adoptive parent about the possibilities. Everyone’s situation is different, so it may be worth seeking out more legal information before pursuing the termination of your rights.