Prepare and file an Application and Order

If the other parent is an alleged father, there is another document that you should complete either immediately prior to or at the same time as filing your Adoption Request. This document is called the Application and Order to Dispense with Further Notice of Adoption Planning.

Before you start

The Application and Order to Dispense with Further Notice of Adoption Planning can prevent someone from contesting the adoption at a later date. If and when the Court signs the Order portion of the document, the alleged father’s rights and the rights of any other possible father will be terminated.

If the alleged father's whereabouts or identity is unknown, you may be required to file a formal petition to terminate parental rights. This will depend on your court. Reach out to your Self-Help Center to find out whether a more formal document or process is required to terminate parental rights.

The Application and Order to Dispense with Further Notice of Adoption Planning should be prepared and filed with the court prior to filing the Request for Adoption, although some courts will allow you to file at the same time. Your local Self-Help Center should be able to help you with this.

Prepare and file the application and order

  • Prepare the Application and Order

    These sample documents include the language you’ll need to use. Pick the sample that applies to your situation. Draft the document and include your specific information.

    These are not court forms that you fill out. You must create a pleading document, which is information in a specific legal format. See the samples provided for the correct format or reach out to your Self-Help Center for help. Your local court may also have forms you can use for this purpose.









    When you have created this document, you’ll make two copies of it.

  • Attach original documents

    You will attach the original Consent, Waiver, Denial, or Notice of Alleged Paternity with proof of service (or Domestic Certified Mail Receipt if the alleged father lives out of state and was served by Certified Mail, Return Receipt Requested).

    If the alleged father's identity or whereabouts are unknown, you'll attach your Declaration and a birth certificate.

  • Prepare a cover letter

    If this Application and Order is being filed prior to the Adoption Request, you should create a cover letter asking the Court to order, without a hearing, that no further notice is necessary to this alleged father or any other possible father.

  • File your documents

    Check with your Self-Help Center to see whether your court allows you to file the Application and Order prior to filing your Adoption Request.

    Bring your documents to the courthouse for filing or file electronically if your county requires electronic filings. You can find out if your court requires online filing by visiting your court’s website or Self-Help Center.

  • In certain situations, wait for the investigation

    If you have filed a Notice of Alleged Paternity or if the alleged father's identify or whereabouts are unknown, the court will assign an investigator (unless you have provided your own investigator). The investigator will review your request for an application to dispense with notice and conduct an interview with the mother and proposed stepparent. The goal is to determine if there is any other possible way to locate and provide notice to the alleged father.  

    The investigator will file a report with the court with a recommendation. If their recommendation is to terminate parental rights, the court may sign the order without a hearing. They will then forward the signed and filed order to you.

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