Grounds for Termination of Parental Rights by the Other Parent

Termination of parental rights is a serious and complex matter and should not be taken lightly.  The other parent’s mere lack of involvement in the child’s life is not enough to require terminating his or her rights to the child.  

There are several grounds for terminating the other parent’s rights, including, but not limited to:

  • Abuse or Neglect
  • Failure to Pay Child Support to the Other Parent
  • Failure to Establish Paternity
  • Abandonment
  • Termination of Parental Rights of Another Child and Lack of Safe Home
  • Relinquishment for Adoption

If any of these grounds exist, a parent can file a petition for termination of parental rights.  The petitioner (or parent trying to terminate the other’s parental rights) must prove that grounds exist to terminate parental rights by clear, cogent, and convincing evidence.  Even if the petitioner proves that one or more grounds exist, the judge still has to make a decision to determine whether it is in the best interest of the minor child for parental rights to be terminated.


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