Can I Leave My Baby at the Hospital?

For many women, pregnancy is an exciting time during which they eagerly anticipate the birth of their child. Some women, though, lack the resources or ability to care for a child and are uncertain of what they will do once the child is born. Similarly, other expectant mothers encounter circumstances during their pregnancy that compel them to change their minds regarding raising their children.

Deciding whether to give a child up for adoption can be overwhelming, and some women wait until the child is born before making a decision. As such, they may wonder whether they can leave their baby at the hospital, without facing legal consequences. If you have questions about your rights and obligations with regard to relinquishing custody of your child, it is in your best interest to talk to an experienced Pensacola, Florida adoption attorney.

Women who are fearful of the potential consequences of relinquishing custody of their children may be more likely to place their children in unsafe situations. As such, to prevent the risk of tragic consequences, the Florida legislature enacted “safe haven” laws, which essentially allow parents to terminate their parental rights by leaving an infant that is one week old or younger at a hospital, fire station, or emergency medical services station. Parents who take advantage of the safe haven laws will not be prosecuted.

Adoption as an Alternative to Leaving a Baby at the Hospital

While it is legal for a parent to leave their baby at the hospital following birth, there is no need to do so, as they can make plans for the child’s adoption either prior to or after their birth. Unlike leaving a baby at a hospital, adoption provides birth parents with peace of mind that their child will receive the care and support they need.

Adoption is not a one size fits all solution. Instead, expectant parents can customize their adoption plan to meet their needs. They can meet with prospective adoptive parents and generally can select parents that align with their values or expectations for their child. In many instances, birth parents and their extended family can maintain contact or communication with their children after the adoption is final. Birth mothers who choose adoption before their child is born can also expect to feel supported during their pregnancy, both by their adoption team and the adoptive parents.

Speak to a Knowledgeable Pensacola Adoption Lawyer

Expectant mothers do not always have the means or desire to care for and raise their children, and while it is legally permissible for them to leave their children at the hospital after they are born, adoption may be better suited to meet their needs.

If you are pregnant and have questions regarding adoption, it is smart to speak to a lawyer regarding your options. Clay H. Whittaker of Gulf Coast Adoptions is a knowledgeable Pensacola, Florida based adoption lawyer who is skilled at helping people complete adoptions in an efficient and respectful manner, and formulate unique plans to fit their needs.

We have Florida offices in Pensacola, Pace, Tallahassee, and Miramar Beach. We assist expectant mothers throughout the entire state of Florida.

You can contact Attorney Whittaker through our online chat or by using our online form. Our adoption team is available to call 24/7 at 850-999-7977 so there is no reason to wait. Call or chat now.

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