The Rights of Unmarried Parents - Oregon

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Definitions

Citation: Rev. Stat. §§ 109.070; 109.092; 109.096

The parentage of a person is rebuttably presumed if either of the following apply:

 

  • The person is married to the birth parent at the time of the child's birth, regardless of whether the marriage is void.
  • The person is married to the birth parent and the child is born within 300 days after the marriage is terminated.

When a person is pregnant with a child, the person and any person to whom they are not married and with whom they engaged in sexual intercourse at approximately the time of conception have an obligation to recognize that the other person may be responsible for the conception. During the months of pregnancy, the person may join the birth parent in acknowledging parentage and assuming the rights and duties of expectant parenthood.

If after the birth of the child the birth parent decides to surrender the child for adoption and parentage has not been acknowledged by the other parent, the birth parent has the right to consent to the child's adoption without the consent of the putative other parent. This does not apply if the child is an Indian child.

When the parentage of a child has not been established, the putative other parent is entitled to reasonable notice in adoption or other court proceedings concerning the custody of the child, if either of the following applies:

  • That the child resided with the putative other parent at any time during the 60 days immediately preceding the initiation of the proceeding, or at any time since the child's birth if the child is less than 60 days old when the proceeding is initiated
  • That the putative other parent repeatedly has contributed or tried to contribute to the support of the child during the year immediately preceding the initiation of the proceeding, or during the period since the child's birth if the child is younger than age 1 when the proceeding is initiated

Use of Parentage Registries

This issue is not addressed in the statutes reviewed.

Alternate Means to Establish Parentage

Citation: Rev. Stat. §§ 109.070; 432.098; 109.251; 109.252; 109.258

The parentage of a person may be established by a voluntary acknowledgement as follows:

  • By the marriage of the child's parents after the birth of the child, and the parents filing the voluntary acknowledgement of parentage form, as provided by § 432.098, with the State Registrar of the Center for Health Statistics
  • By filing the voluntary acknowledgement of parentage form with the State registrar, which action will establish parentage for all purposes
  • By establishment of parentage through a voluntary acknowledgement of parentage in another State

When a voluntary acknowledgment of parentage form is signed by both biological parents and witnessed by a third party, the form establishes parentage for all purposes when filed with the State registrar, provided there is no second parent already named in the report of live birth. When there is no second parent named on the child's record of live birth, the filing of such voluntary acknowledgment of parentage form shall cause the State registrar to place the name of the parent who has signed the voluntary acknowledgment of parentage form on the record of live birth of the child or, if appropriate, establish a replacement for the record containing the name of the child's parent, as that parent is named in the voluntary acknowledgment of parentage form.

The term 'blood tests' includes any test for genetic markers to determine parentage, including any test that extracts genetic material from any human tissue. The court on its own initiative or upon motion of any party to a parentage action shall order the birth parent, child, alleged other parent, and any other named respondent who may be the genetic parent to submit to blood tests. A disputable presumption of parentage is created if one or more blood tests result in a cumulative parentage index of 99 or greater.

 

Required Information

Citation: Rev. Stat. § 432.098

The director of the Oregon Health Authority shall adopt by rule a form of a voluntary acknowledgment of parentage that includes the minimum requirements specified by the United States Secretary of Health and Human Services.

The voluntary acknowledgment of parentage form must contain the following:

  • A statement of rights and responsibilities, including any rights afforded to a minor parent
  • A statement of the alternatives to and consequences of signing the acknowledgment
  • Instructions on how to file the form with the State registrar and information about any fee required
  • Lines for the Social Security numbers and addresses of the parents
  • A statement that the rights, responsibilities, alternatives, and consequences listed on the acknowledgment were read to the parties prior to signing the acknowledgment

Revocation of Claim to Parentage

Citation: Rev. Stat. § 109.070

A party to a voluntary acknowledgment of parentage may rescind the acknowledgment within the earlier of the following:

  • Sixty days after filing the acknowledgment
  • The date of a proceeding relating to the child, including a proceeding to establish a support order, in which the party wishing to rescind the acknowledgment is also a party

To rescind the acknowledgment, the party shall sign and file with the State registrar a written document declaring the rescission.

A signed voluntary acknowledgment of parentage filed in this State may be challenged and set aside in circuit court at any time after the 60-day period based on evidence of fraud, duress, or a material mistake of fact. The challenge may be brought by any of the following:

  • A party to the acknowledgment
  • The child
  • The Department of Human Services if the child is in the care and custody of the department

The challenge shall be initiated by filing a petition with the court. The party bringing the challenge has the burden of proof. If the court finds by a preponderance of the evidence that the acknowledgment was signed because of fraud, duress, or material mistake of fact, the court shall set aside the acknowledgment unless, considering the interests of the parties and the child, the court finds that setting aside the acknowledgment would be substantially inequitable.

Legal responsibilities arising from the acknowledgment, including child support, may not be suspended during the challenge, except for good cause.

A voluntary acknowledgment of parentage is not valid if, before the party signed the acknowledgment, any of the following apply:

  • The party signed a consent to the adoption of the child by another person.
  • The party signed a document relinquishing the child to a child-caring agency.
  • The party's parental rights were terminated by a court.
  • In an adjudication, the party was determined not to be the genetic parent of the child.

Access to Information

Citation: Rev. Stat. § 432.098

Upon request, the State registrar shall provide a copy of any voluntary acknowledgment of parentage form to the State agency responsible for administration of the child support enforcement program created under title IV-D of the Social Security Act. The duty imposed upon the State registrar by this section is limited to records of live birth executed and filed with the State registrar after October 1, 1995.