Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

Legally Enforceable Open Adoption Agreements???

http://www.childwelfare.gov/systemwide/laws_policies/statutes/cooperative.cfm

I came across this link regarding OA agreements. One thing that I see in this article is that the agreement has to be "filed with the courts". Isn't this the very same thing that the birth mother that is suing AP's in California trying to overturn the adoption of her daughter, Peri (now 6 y/o), was/is trying to enforce? Carla Moquin of www.bringperihome.com? And wasn't that agreement to have been filed by the adoptive parents who chose not to do that?

Are there really legally enforceable contracts now in the last couple of years? Does anyone know?

Answer Question
 
doodlebopfan

Asked by doodlebopfan at 1:31 AM on Apr. 13, 2010 in Adoption

Level 20 (9,525 Credits)
Answers (16)
  • I have never hear of one.
    BlooBird

    Answer by BlooBird at 1:52 AM on Apr. 13, 2010

  • Interesting link. I've been involved with adoption agencies, issues,classes, and groups, and I have never heard any say that it can be enforceable.   Thanks for the link.

    BlooBird

    Answer by BlooBird at 1:56 AM on Apr. 13, 2010

  • OP, I read this post and the one you posted before it and I am facinated. Do you have an open adoption yourself?

    Some AP's have wonderful Bmoms (I am one of them) in their lives and there is no need for a legally enforceable agreement no more than I have to legally force the Bmom to keep in contact with me. But I know how lucky I am. There are some who are in situations where the Bmom is not well and to legally enforce such an agreement is not in the best interest of anyone, least of all the child.

    It is interesting that you are so consumed with this subject when you wont be forced to have an addict, or mentally ill person mandated into your life without your ability to monitor what is best for your child. Flexibility is the key and legally required relationshps lose that.
    Anonymous

    Answer by Anonymous at 9:28 AM on Apr. 13, 2010

  • OP, I read this post and the one you posted before it and I am facinated. Do you have an open adoption yourself? It is interesting that you are so consumed with this subject when you wont be forced to have an addict, or mentally ill person mandated into your life without your ability to monitor what is best for your child.

    Dear Anon, if "open" means I know the birth parents' names & address & that they know ours, then Yes, it's open. You sound as though you know that we adopted thru FC & weren't allowed contact prior to the adoption from your 2nd comment. However, my point isn't about contact or forcing contact.

    The point of my other question is to see what other people believe "OA" means, because I think it is as different as night & day to the EMCA's & the PAP's. I also don't believe that the PAP's are necessarily to blame because they are just as uninformed usually as the EMCA's when they arrive at the agency.
    doodlebopfan

    Answer by doodlebopfan at 11:10 AM on Apr. 13, 2010

  • (con't) This link shows that some states have opted for some restricted version of an "open" adoption to be "at least on the surface" legally enforceable. Some say that the child has to be older & adopted thru FC. Some say extended birth families can be involved. Each state is different. All I am trying to do is raise awareness in new changes in adoption laws when I see them.

    I do agree that relationships should have flexibility & that "structured visits or contracts" shouldn't be mandated. I also know that because of the agencies "selling" the idea of a very open arrangement & then telling PAP's that it's unenforceable so "do what you want, the baby is yours now & the birth mom can't do anything about it", that it has caused at least one birth mother, Carla Moquin, to take this to as high a legal level as she can & there ARE changes on the horizon. Wouldn't you at least like to know if you were to adopt another child?
    doodlebopfan

    Answer by doodlebopfan at 11:20 AM on Apr. 13, 2010

  • (con't) EDIT: I do agree that relationships should have flexibility & that "structured visits or contracts" shouldn't have to be mandated. (Ran out of room.) Again, my posts are about "TRUTH" vs. "PERCEPTION". I would say that both posts will get a variety of answers from one end of the spectrum to the other. But it is hard to talk about adoption issues without a clear understanding of adoption terninology and an understanding of laws that vary from state to state. I think as we discuss these matters, intelligibly, that anyone who is effected by adoption can stay up to date on laws that affect them. This includes first/birth moms, adoptive parents, and adoptees.


    http://www.childwelfare.gov/systemwide/laws_policies/statutes/cooperative.cfm (The link)


     

    doodlebopfan

    Answer by doodlebopfan at 11:41 AM on Apr. 13, 2010

  • I also know that because of the agencies "selling" the idea of a very open arrangement & then telling PAP's that it's unenforceable so "do what you want, the baby is yours now & the birth mom can't do anything about it", that it has caused at least one birth mother, Carla Moquin, to take this to as high a legal level as she can & there ARE changes on the horizon.


    Who is the agency in 2010 that tells Aparents this????? I followed the Carla Moquin case and didnt see this in the court transcripts, do have inside information. 


     

    Anonymous

    Answer by Anonymous at 11:46 AM on Apr. 13, 2010

  • In D.C. there are legally enforceable open adoption agreements. I am not sure about the consequences for not following but there is an article in Adoptive Families magazine that a lawyer wrote about how it is enforceable. The thing that does not happen is giving the child back if you are not compliant.

    frogdawg

    Answer by frogdawg at 12:15 PM on Apr. 13, 2010

  • What I dont understand about the Peri case is why the child would go back to the Bmom? Legally, she placed the child for adoption. She terminated HER rights. Legally, I would think the child would go back to the state or the agency but not the bmom. Adoption isnt just betwen the parents, it is a legal process with the state. When a foster family cant parent any longer, , the child doesnt automatically go to the bparent, it goes back to the state.

    That is not in the best interest of the child but the best interests of that child went out the window a long time ago.
    Anonymous

    Answer by Anonymous at 12:44 PM on Apr. 13, 2010

  • I believe that for Carla that she is suing for custody of the child back because she says that she would never have agreed to terminating her rights were she not to have the open adotion "as promised". That being that there were plenty of contacts, via emails, etc. and they were going to see her as their "extended" family, but of course Carla had no way of knowing that they only saw their "extended family" annually & that would apply to her as well. After the adoption finalized she received emails to cease contact except what was "written down" in that agreement. It also hurts her that the AP's didn't consider her other children to be Peri's siblings, because a piece of paper severed that.

    I only brought up the connection re: Carla BECAUSE...when women are being promised OA's that are legally enforceable, there are some things ON THEIR PART that may have to be filed with the court in order for it to hold up in the future.
    doodlebopfan

    Answer by doodlebopfan at 3:40 PM on Apr. 13, 2010

Join CafeMom now to contribute your answer and become part of our community. It's free and takes just a minute.
close Join now to connect to
other members!
Connect with Facebook or Sign Up Using Email

Already Joined? LOG IN