Google Answers Logo
View Question
 
Q: Teenage Daugher Pregnant underage from a male over 18 - legal issues ( Answered 3 out of 5 stars,   2 Comments )
Question  
Subject: Teenage Daugher Pregnant underage from a male over 18 - legal issues
Category: Family and Home
Asked by: daniel50-ga
List Price: $85.00
Posted: 16 Jul 2004 01:34 PDT
Expires: 15 Aug 2004 01:34 PDT
Question ID: 374843
My teeenage daughter became pregnant when she was sixteen.  We just
found out from tests that she is six months pregnant.  The guy that
got her pregnant is 18 and is obsessed with her.  Both are immsture
and suffer from ADD.  He does not hold a job and has been using drugs.
 Can I take legal action including statutory rape or get a restraining
order to keep him from my daughter. She broke up with him until she
learned she was pregnant five weeks ago.  He is trying to stop her
from going to counseling and wants to adopt the baby with her but he
has never worked never finished school and manipulates her. He admits
he got her pregnant without using any protection. What as a parent can
I do here.  She is now 17 and the baby is due in mid October. Are
there any boarding programs for teenage girls, And must he agree to
the adoption or can we take legal action to keep him out of the
decision

Clarification of Question by daniel50-ga on 16 Jul 2004 01:36 PDT
We are Maryland residents
Answer  
Subject: Re: Teenage Daugher Pregnant underage from a male over 18 - legal issues
Answered By: serenata-ga on 16 Jul 2004 08:22 PDT
Rated:3 out of 5 stars
 
Hello Daniel ~

I am not licensed to practice law in the State of Maryland, and this
shouldn't be construed as legal advice.

Please notice the disclaimer at the bottom of this (and every) Google Answers page:

     "Answers and comments provided on Google Answers are
      general information, and are not intended to substitute
      for informed professional ... legal ... or other
      professional advice. Google does not endorse, and
      expressly disclaims liability for any ... opinion
      expressed in answers or comments. Please read carefully
      the Google Answers Terms of Service."

Note: Google Answers Terms of Service are located here:
   - http://answers.google.com/answers/termsofservice.html


I'm afraid the answer to your questions may not be what you want to hear.


=============================
The Issue of Statutory Rape
=============================

The Maryland Code : CRIMINAL LAW : TITLE 3. OTHER CRIMES AGAINST THE
PERSON : SUBTITLE 3. SEXUAL CRIMES :  3-304. Rape in the second
degree.

" 3-304. Rape in the second degree.
	
  (a)  Prohibited.- A person may not engage in vaginal
       intercourse with another: 
	
   (1) by force, or the threat of force, without the consent
       of the other; 

   (2) if the victim is a mentally defective individual, a
       mentally incapacitated individual, or a physically
       helpless individual, and the person performing the
       act knows or reasonably should know that the victim
       is a mentally defective individual, a mentally
       incapacitated individual, or a physically helpless
       individual; or 

   (3) if the victim is under the age of 14 years, and the
       person performing the act is at least 4 years older
       than the victim."

   - http://mlis.state.md.us/cgi-win/web_statutes.exe


The Code seems pretty clear on the matter of statutory rape, so unless
the father is four years older than your daughter, it would seem to
preclude pressing charges for rape.



=============================
Placing a Restraining Order
=============================

Since your daughter has not reached the age of majority, you could
place a restraining order against the father - however, you should
also know that the Maryland Code provides that she could marry the
father without your consent by virtue of the fact she is pregnant.

     " 2-301. Marriage of individual 16 or 17 years old;
        marriage of individual under the age of 16 years.

       (a)  Marriage of individual 16 or 17 years old.- An 
       individual 16 or 17 years old may not marry unless:

         (1) the individual has the consent of a parent or
         guardian and the parent or guardian swears that the
         individual is at least 16 years old; or

         (2) if the individual does not have the consent of
         a parent or guardian, either party to be married
         gives the clerk a certificate from a licensed
         physician stating that the physician has examined
         the woman to be married and has found that she is
         pregnant or has given birth to a child."
   - http://mlis.state.md.us/cgi-win/web_statutes.exe


As you can see, there are considerations within the statutes for your
daughter to marry and completely disregard any advice or best
interests or advice if she chooses.


================================
Father's Agreement to Adoption
================================

The Maryland code specifies who must consent to adoption,

     " 5-311. Required consent; revocation.

     (a)  In general.- Unless the natural parents' rights
          have been terminated by a judicial proceeding,
          an individual may not be adopted without the consent
          of:

       (1) the natural mother;
       (2) the natural father; and
       (3) the individual, if the individual is at least
           10 years old."
   - http://198.187.128.12/maryland/lpext.dll/Infobase/25e74/2632e/264ce/26505/26535?fn=document-frame.htm&f=templates


Other pertinent information which concerns your situation involves the
certificate of birth. Apparently, if your daughter is unmarried at the
time of the birth, there is no requirement that the father's name be
entered. Consider,

     " 4-208(a)(6)-(9). Birth registration.

     (6) If the child's mother was not married at the time
         of either conception or birth or between
         conception and birth, the name of the father may
         not be entered on the certificate without an
         affidavit of paternity as authorized by  5-1028
         of the Family Law Article signed by the mother and
         the person to be named on the certificate as the
         father.

     (7) In any case in which paternity of a child is
         determined by a court of competent jurisdiction,
         the name of the father and surname of the child
         shall be entered on the certificate of birth in
         accordance with the finding and order of the court.

     (8) If the father is not named on the certificate of
         birth, no other information about the father shall
         be entered on the certificate."
   - http://198.187.128.12/maryland/lpext.dll/Infobase/2b3fd/2b611/2b666/2b6b6?f=templates&fn=document-frame.htm&q=birth%20certificate&x=Advanced&2.0#LPHit1


Obviously, if no father's name is entered on a certificate of birth,
the consent could not be obtained.

However, Maryland does recognize rights of the father as well and
provides a means for him to establish paternity:

     " 5-310(a)(3)-(6). Natural father.

     (a)  Criteria.- "Natural father" of an individual means
          a man who:

       (3) is named as the father on the individual's
           birth certificate, unless the man signs a
           denial of paternity or his nonpaternity has
           been established to the satisfaction of the
           court by affidavit or testimony;

       (4) is identified by the natural mother as the
           father of the individual, unless the man signs
           a denial of paternity or his nonpaternity has
           been established to the satisfaction of the
           court by affidavit or testimony;

       (5) has been adjudicated to be the father of the
           individual; or

       (6) has acknowledged himself to be the father of
           the individual, orally or in writing, and the
           natural mother of the individual agrees that
           he is the individual's natural father."
   - http://198.187.128.12/maryland/lpext.dll/Infobase/2b3fd/2b611/2b666/2b6b6?f=templates&fn=document-frame.htm&q=birth%20certificate&x=Advanced&2.0#LPHit1


While the mother, if unmarried, doesn't have to enter the name of the
father, the statutes do provide a means for the father to claim and
establish paternity. Under those circumstances, it also appears that
his consent to an adoption would be necessary.


======================================
Boarding Programs for Teenage Girls
======================================

There are boarding homes throughout the United States for pregnant
unmarried teenagers. The most well-known in your area is St. Ann's
Maternity and Infant home. St. Ann's has an excellent program for
teenagers to continue their education, learn parenting skills if they
decide to keep the infant, or assist in adoptions if that is the
decision. In any case, it has an excellent reputation and offers
support and information in order to work out the best arrangements for
all parties concerned.

St. Ann's website can be found here,
   - http://www.saint-anns.com/index.htm


I would highly recommend contacting them in order to help with the
major decisions you will all need to be making.


=============
Summary
=============

Again, reminding you that I am not licensed to practice law. I am not
a lawyer, and I don't play one on TV, either.

You do have rights as a parent of a pregnant teenager; however, there
are other rights to be considered here, too.

The statutes offer some options due to your circumstances, but my
offering this material, which is freely available on the Internet, is
no substitute for consulting with an attorney specializing in family
law.

There are rights afforded you, as a parent of a minor; but there are
also rights afforded your daughter as a mother; the rights of the
father, and lastly, and perhaps most importantly, the rights of the
infant.

Emotions enter the picture, and clear heads should be consulted. Start
with a visit to an attorney who can precisely spell out what your
options are; then I would suggest getting in touch with St. Ann's -
for not only the legal aspects, but for good advice on what may be
best for every party concerned.


Search Terms ~
===============

Maryland Statutes:
   - birth certificates
   - father's rights
   - adoption

Google Search -

   - teen pregnancy homes
   - Maryland + maternity homes
   - Maryland teen pregnancy boarding homes


I hope this helps with your questions. 

Best wishes to all,

Serenata
Google Answers Researcher

Request for Answer Clarification by daniel50-ga on 16 Jul 2004 21:40 PDT
I need more info on alternatives and what my rights as a parent are

Request for Answer Clarification by daniel50-ga on 16 Jul 2004 22:49 PDT
no anwer to right boarding program

Clarification of Answer by serenata-ga on 16 Jul 2004 22:53 PDT
Hi Daniel ~

Your daughter is near the age of majority ... and as pointed out, she
could impose her own rights if she is aware of steps available to do
so.

As her father you could press charges for statutory rape, but the Code
seems clear that the father of the infant must be at least four years
older than your minor daughter.

You can most certainly seek a protective or restraining order against
the father; but know, too, that she can impose her right to marry him
if she has her heart set in that direction.

This is the reason for my recommending at least a consultation with an
attorney specializing in family law - your daughter is close enough to
the age of majority that I doubt you could force her to give the baby
up for adoption, although you might be required to sign the final
paperwork relinquishing the infant.

Your daughter's tender age often becomes a 'grey area' in matters like
this, whereby the court may impose liability on you for her actions
because she is a minor, while granting and/or recognizing the fact
that she is pregnant and close enough to her majority to allow her the
status of an emancipated person in other matters such as relinquishing
an infant for adoption or pressing charges (if applicable) against the
father.

You didn't indicate what your daughter's preferences are, whether or
not she wants protection from him. If these are not her wishes, there
are means available to her to circumvent your wishes because of the
situation in which you find yourselves.

I hope this helps clarify,

Serenata

Clarification of Answer by serenata-ga on 16 Jul 2004 23:27 PDT
We must have both been posting at the same time ~ as I didn't see your
request for the "right boarding program" until after I posted my
clarification.

St. Ann's is well-known as a model throughout the US, and many other
programs model their own after St. Ann's.

What would you consider a "right boarding program"? You are in
Maryland, but if St. Ann's isn't "right", what would you consider the
right type of program for boarding?

That will help to give you other options.

Thank you,

Serenata
daniel50-ga rated this answer:3 out of 5 stars

Comments  
Subject: Re: Teenage Daugher Pregnant underage from a male over 18 - legal issues
From: probonopublico-ga on 16 Jul 2004 09:30 PDT
 
Just a thought ...

The father of your daughter's child may not know his rights and,
assuming that they are as set out by Serenata and this is worth
checking with a lawyer, then you may find that he could forfeit some
by default.

In any event, people do change their minds and either your daughter or
the prospective father of her child may change hers/his in due course.


Obviously, this is very worrying for you but a good lawyer who knows
the issues is a good way to proceed.

I hope everything works out for you.

All the Best!

Bryan
Subject: Best wishes, Daniel
From: daytrader76-ga on 16 Jul 2004 09:39 PDT
 
It is a difficult situation.  My heart goes out to you.

Is there hope for the boyfriend?  Can you help him become an adult?

It may seem like the end for everybody, but it's not.  In October, you
will have a beautiful grandchild that you will love and cherish.

Teen pregnancy is not the end of a woman's life.  I personally know
many teenage mothers who have no regrets.  Some of them have college
degrees as well.  Mothers get a lot more financial aid, btw.  But
maybe I am biased, because I was a teenage pregnancy!  My mom is now
working on her Master's in nursing, and I'm about to start law school.
 When her dad learned of her pregnancy, he threw her out.  My dad as a
teen sounds much like your daughter's boyfriend.  We grew up in a
trailer, poor as dirt, mostly because my parents' parents never helped
them at all.  But we did ok.  My mom's dad never fully repaired his
relationship with his daughter, even though I'm sure that he was
always just trying to persuade her to do what he though was best for
her.

So it's not the end; things are just beginning.  Life will be what you
make of it.  Best wishes again.

Important Disclaimer: Answers and comments provided on Google Answers are general information, and are not intended to substitute for informed professional medical, psychiatric, psychological, tax, legal, investment, accounting, or other professional advice. Google does not endorse, and expressly disclaims liability for any product, manufacturer, distributor, service or service provider mentioned or any opinion expressed in answers or comments. Please read carefully the Google Answers Terms of Service.

If you feel that you have found inappropriate content, please let us know by emailing us at answers-support@google.com with the question ID listed above. Thank you.
Search Google Answers for
Google Answers  


Google Home - Answers FAQ - Terms of Service - Privacy Policy