Consent to Adoption - Texas

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Who Must Consent to an Adoption

Citation: Fam. Code § 162.010

Unless the managing conservator is the petitioner, the written consent of a managing conservator to the adoption must be filed.

If a parent of the child is presently the spouse of the petitioner, that parent must join in the petition for adoption, and further consent of that parent is not required.

Consent of Child Being Adopted

Citation: Fam. Code § 162.010

A child who is age 12 or older must consent to the adoption in writing or in court. The court may waive this requirement if it would serve the child's best interests.

When Parental Consent is not Needed

Citation: Fam. Code §§ 161.002; 162.010

The rights of an alleged father may be terminated if any of the following apply:

  • After being served with a citation, he does not respond by the timely filing of an admission of paternity or a counterclaim for paternity.
  • The child is older than age 1 at the time the petition for adoption is filed; he has not registered with the paternity registry; and after the exercise of due diligence by the petitioner, his identity and location are unknown or his identity is known but he cannot be located.
  • The child is younger than age 1 at the time the petition for adoption is filed, and he has not registered with the paternity registry.
  • He has registered with the paternity registry, but the petitioner's attempt to personally serve citation at the address provided to the registry and at any other address for the alleged father known by the petitioner has been unsuccessful, despite the due diligence of the petitioner.

The court may waive the requirement of consent by the managing conservator if the court finds that the consent is being refused or has been revoked without good cause.

When Consent Can Be Executed

Citation: Fam. Code §§ 161.103; 161.106

An affidavit for voluntary relinquishment of parental rights must be signed after the birth of the child but not before 48 hours after the birth of the child by the parent, whether or not a minor, whose parental rights are to be relinquished.

A man may sign an affidavit disclaiming any interest in a child before the birth of the child.

How Consent Must Be Executed

Citation: Fam. Code §§ 161.103; 161.106

An affidavit for voluntary relinquishment of parental rights must be signed by the parent, whether or not a minor, whose parental rights are to be relinquished, witnessed by two credible persons, and verified before a person authorized to take oaths. The affidavit must contain the following:

  • The name, address, and age of the parent
  • The name, age, and birth date of the child
  • The names and addresses of the guardians of the child if any
  • A statement that the person signing the affidavit is or is not presently obligated to make payments for the support of the child
  • A description of all property owned by the child
  • An allegation that termination of the parent-child relationship is in the best interests of the child
  • The name and address of the other parent or a statement that the parental rights of the other parent have been terminated or that the child has no presumed father
  • A statement that the parent has been informed of parental rights and duties
  • A statement that the relinquishment is revocable, irrevocable, or irrevocable for a stated period of time
  • The designation of a prospective adoptive parent, the department, or a licensed child-placing agency to serve as managing conservator of the child

The affidavit may not contain terms for limited posttermination contact between the child and the parent whose parental rights are to be relinquished as a condition of the relinquishment of parental rights.

A man may sign an affidavit disclaiming any interest in a child and waiving notice in any suit filed or to be filed affecting the parent-child relationship. The affidavit shall be signed by the man, whether or not a minor; witnessed by two credible persons; and verified before a person authorized to take oaths. The affidavit may contain a statement that the affiant does not admit being the father of the child or having had a sexual relationship with the mother of the child.

Revocation of Consent

Citation: Fam. Code §§ 162.011; 162.011

At any time before an order granting the adoption of the child is rendered, a consent required by § 162.010 may be revoked by filing a signed revocation.

The following applies to an affidavit of relinquishment of parental rights that fails to state that the relinquishment is irrevocable for a stated time:

  • It is revocable only if the revocation is made before the 11th day after the date the affidavit is executed.
  • It is irrevocable on or after the 11th day after the date the affidavit is executed.