A person believing to be the biological father of a child may register for the Putative Father Registry. Please note that applying for the Putative father Registry does not establish paternity.
Prior to an adoption being finalized a Putative Father Registry Search/Paternity Search must be done and the results presented to the court.
Putative Father Information
A man who has had a sexual relationship with a woman is on notice that the woman may become pregnant, and that she may put the child up for adoption.
If the father thinks the mother may try to put the child up for adoption, he should seek legal advice immediately.
The unmarried father will be permanently precluded from claiming any rights unless he has previously established that he is entitled to notice of an adoption proceeding. See Utah Code section 78B-6-110(3).
To protect his rights and interests, an unmarried biological father must strictly comply with the steps below, even if he doesn't know the mother is pregnant. See Utah Code section 78B-6-110(3).
- File a paternity (parentage) action in a district court in Utah.
- Complete and file a Notice of Commencement of Paternity Proceeding form with the Utah State Office of Vital Records.
- File an affidavit in the paternity action stating that he is able to have full custody, support the child, and pay for expenses of the mother's pregnancy and childbirth.
- Offer to pay and actually have paid a fair amount of the expenses incurred in connection with the mother's pregnancy and childbirth, in accordance with his financial ability, unless he is unaware of the pregnancy or he was prevented from paying.
If the father does not live in Utah and does not know that the mother has given birth in Utah, his rights will still be terminated unless he has followed the requirements in the state where he has been living.
If the father does not live in Utah and does know the mother is giving birth in Utah, he must complete the steps above.
Applying to be added to the Putative Father Registry (Filing a Commencement of Paternity)
Process for unmarried man to register for potential parental rights.
File a parental petition by going online to https://www.utcourts.gov/ocap
Start new interview - Click on Custody, Support, or Paternity - Petitioner. This will begin an "interview" which will walk you through the process.
Click on Prepare papers for a parentage case (paternity, custody, parent-time, child support).
Work through the interview questions. When completed print out the documents and take them to the district court you indicated in the interview questions.
You will file the paperwork and pay the filing fee.
Once filed with the District Court bring the proof of filing to the Vital Records office along with the "Notice of Commencement of Paternity Proceedings" document.
Your paperwork is given a date and time stamp in the Putative Father Registry.
Applying to search the Putative Father Registry (Paternity Search)
The following people/parties are entitled to request a paternity search: Attorney handling the adoption, adoption agency handling the adoption, Parent listed on the current birth record, Adoptive parent (if not represented by an attorney and not using an adoption agency).
To search the putative father registry you must supply a Paternity Search Application, copy of the requester’s ID and a check or money order for the correct fees. If the requester is an attorney or adoption agency we will need a signed letter on company letterhead or if the requester is the adoptive parents we will need a copy of the petition of adoption showing no listed attorney.