What Prospective Birth Parents Should Know About North Carolina Adoption Laws

What Prospective Birth Parents Should Know About North Carolina Adoption Laws

North Carolina has several laws that protect the rights of birth parents who are considering placing their baby for adoption. Finding the right adoptive parents for your child can be a complex process, and these laws are designed to clearly spell out your rights and obligations.

North Carolina birth parents may be interested in having certain expenses covered by prospective adoptive parents, and they should also be aware of their obligations when giving consent to an adoption. By properly following all laws, you can reduce the risk of having legal problems that affect your adoption plan.

Expenses That Adoptive Parents Can Pay For

Adoptive parents can pay for many expenses related to the adoption and birth of the child. §48-10-103. These expenses include:

  • adoption agency services
  • medical expenses related to the pregnancy or birth
  • counseling services for a birth parent or the adoptee that are related to the adoption
  • living expenses for the mother during pregnancy and up to six weeks after birth
  • legal services and travel expenses related to the adoption
  • cost for preparing the home study

These payments should be carefully accounted for to ensure that they for legally authorized expenses. It should also be clear that there was no “quid pro quo” involved in these payments because it is illegal to pay someone to place a minor for adoption or give consent to an adoption.

If an adoptive parent makes a payment for a legitimate expense and the birth parent later decides not to place their child for adoption, the adoptive parent cannot recover these costs unless the birth parent committed fraud when receiving the payment.

North Carolina Consent and Revocation Laws

The birth mother and father must both typically give consent to an adoption. However, the birth father may be presumed to be the mother’s husband or a man who has legitimated the child, supported the child, or held out the child as his own. §48-3-601.

Consent must be given in writing and at the proper time. A mother can only consent to an adoption after the birth of a child, while a father can consent either before or after birth.

For consent to be voided, it must either be revoked during the statutory period or challenged based on legal grounds. The statutory period is typically seven days and consent must be revoked in a manner specifically listed in §48-3-608. If you have given consent and now wish to revoke it, contact an adoption attorney immediately to discuss your case. You do not have a right to revoked once the statuary period expires.

King Law Offices is a full-service law firm with an outstanding team of professionals who work diligently, creatively, and compassionately on behalf of our clients each day.  We serve the Upstate of South Carolina and Western North Carolina.  Call 888-748-KING (5464) today for a free consultation.