Your rights as a parent are well-protected in the United States. If you give birth or are the father of a biological child, you have the right to know if your child has been born and if the mother seeks adoption. Both men and women have a say in adoption; if a father doesn't want the adoption to go through, he may end up being the sole caretaker of the child after the mother gives up her rights.
When it comes to adoptions, biological parents must give up their rights before adoptive parents gain their own. If a mother agrees to put her child up for adoption but decides not to after giving birth, the potential adoptive parents do not have a say in that decision.
Once both parents' legal rights are given up, an adoptive parent or couple may move forward with an adoption. Normally, parents have to give up their rights willingly, but there are some cases in which the courts may take away parents' rights.
In New York, Oregon and Idaho, there is no specific time when a parent has to give up his or her rights for adoption. In other states, mothers may only give consent for an adoption after giving birth. Fathers can give up their rights at any time in many states, and in Hawaii and Alabama, mothers can give up their rights before they give birth. Texas requires 48 hours following birth before mothers may give up their parental rights. If you have any concerns about this during the adoption process, your attorney can help.