Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Can my son's name be used on birth certificate of ex-girlfriend's kid? He most likely is father, but wants to give up all rights

Q:  Ex-girlfriend was told by him years ago (in advance) that if she were to ever get pregnant he definitely would want it terminated. She is refusing and plans to have the kid and her parents are fine with it. My son is 22 yrs old and she will be 21 yrs old in May 2014. We told her & her parents not to use his name on birth certificate and they said they wouldn't. I don't trust them. She is approx 8 - 9 weeks pregnant. He is a full time college student with a minimal part time job. He wants to sign off on a legal document that says he voluntarily relinquishes his parental rights for ever. Is that possible?

A:  David's Answer:  She can put his name on the birth certificate, but unless he also signs an acknowledgement of paternity, her act, in itself, does not establish paternity. Moreover, the only way he can "have his rights terminated" - outside of a child welfare proceeding - is for the mother to have the child adopted by another father. Schedule a consult with a Family Law attorney in your area for more info.   -- David Bliven, Westchester Family Law attorney (

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