Kentucky has not had a mechanism for a man who thinks he might be the father of a child to be notified if the mother tries to put the child up for adoption . . . until now. Effective for the first time as of July 2018, a man who believes he might be the father of a child in Kentucky may sign up with a registry, so he can be notified about a potential upcoming adoption. See below for big changes to Kentucky law for putative fathers.

The man must meet certain criteria. A putative father is a male who may be a child’s father but who:

  1. Is not married to the mother on or before the date the child is born;
  2. Has not established paternity in a court or agency proceeding in this or another state before the filing of a petition for adoption of the child; or
  3. Has not completed an acknowledgement of paternity affidavit before the filing of a petition for adoption of the child.

Any male who fits one of these categories should consider registering. The putative father provides certain specific information to the Cabinet for Families and Children by completing the necessary documents, ensuring that it is accurate, and keeping that information up to date at all times.

It is important to note that the putative father must act quite quickly. He must register with the Cabinet prior to the birth of the child or, if he did not have notice prior to the birth of the child, within thirty (30) days after the birth.

Many more details are contained in the various statutes enacted by the state of Kentucky to set this up. If you might be the father of a child, you should discuss this matter with an attorney immediately. It is critical that the registration gets completed correctly and in a very timely fashion to prevent a father’s parental rights being terminated and the child being adopted against his wishes. Clark, Cornett and Smith is conveniently located in Lexington, KY and proudly serves the surrounding central Kentucky areas. Call us today to schedule a consultation.