2012 South Carolina Code of Laws
Title 63 - South Carolina Children's Code
Chapter 9 - ADOPTIONS
Section 63-9-730 - Notice of adoption proceedings.
(A) Notice of any proceeding initiated pursuant to this article must be given to the persons or agencies specified in subsection (B) of this section, unless the person has given consent or relinquishment or parental rights have been terminated.
(B) The following persons or agencies are entitled to notice as provided in subsection (A):
(1) a person adjudicated by a court in this State to be the father of the child;
(2) a person or agency required to give consent or relinquishment pursuant to Section 63-9-310(A) or (B) from whom consent or relinquishment cannot be obtained;
(3) a person who has properly registered with the Responsible Father Registry at the time of the filing of the petition for termination of parental rights or adoption;
(4) a person who is recorded on the child's birth certificate as the child's father. The Department of Health and Environmental Control shall release this information to any attorney representing a party in an adoption or termination of parental rights action pursuant to a subpoena;
(5) a person who is openly living with the child or the child's mother, or both, at the time the proceeding is initiated and who is holding himself out to be the child's father;
(6) a person who has been identified as the child's father by the mother in a sworn, written statement; and
(7) a person from whom consent or relinquishment is not required pursuant to Section 63-9-320(A)(2).
(C) Persons specified in subsection (B) of this section are not entitled to notice if the child who is the subject of the adoption proceeding was conceived as a result of criminal sexual conduct or incest.
(D) Any person or agency entitled to notice pursuant to this section must be given notice that adoption proceedings have been initiated. Notice must be given in the manner prescribed by law for personal service of summons in civil actions. If notice cannot be effected by personal service, notice may be given by publication or by the manner the court decides will provide notice.
(E) Notice given pursuant to this section must include notice of the following:
(1) within thirty days of receiving notice the person or agency shall respond in writing by filing with the court in which the adoption is pending notice and reasons to contest, intervene, or otherwise respond;
(2) the court must be informed of the person's or agency's current address and of any changes in address during the adoption proceedings; and
(3) failure to file a response within thirty days of receiving notice constitutes consent to adoption of the child and forfeiture of all rights and obligations of the person or agency with respect to the child.
(F) When notice of intent to contest, intervene, or otherwise respond is filed with the court within the required time period, the person or agency must be given an opportunity to appear and to be heard before the final hearing on the merits of the adoption.
(G) Petitioners must be notified by the court of notice and reasons to contest, intervene, or otherwise respond, and petitioners also must be given the opportunity to be represented or to appear and to be heard at any hearing held relating to the adoption.
HISTORY: 2008 Act No. 361, Section 2; 2009 Act No. 41, Section 2, eff July 1, 2009.
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