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West Virginia

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West Virginia

Who may adopt?
A stepparent.
A husband and wife jointly.
Any married person with consent of spouse.

Consent for adoption to be executed?
Consent may not be executed until at least 72 hours after the child's birth.

Revocation of consent?
Consent may provide for conditional revocation if other required consents are not executed, or in direct placements, a petition for adoption is denied or withdrawn.
Consent may be revoked if, prior to the entry of the adoption order, the birth parent and adopting parent mutually agree, or by a showing that consent was obtained by fraud or duress.
The court will award custody based on child's best interest.

Who may place a child for adoption?
The child welfare agency.
The department.

Advertising?
This issue is not addressed in the statutes reviewed.

Facilitators?
Any person or agency who knowingly offers, gives, or agrees to give to another person, and any person who receives, accepts, or offers to accept, money, property, service or other thing of value in consideration for the recipient's locating, providing, or procuring a minor child for any purpose that entails a transfer of the legal or physical custody of said child, including, but not limited to, adoption or placement, is guilty of a felony.
A child whose parent, guardian, or custodian has sold or attempted to sell said child in violation of this article may be deemed an abused child. The court may place such a child in the custody of the department of health and human resources or with such other responsible person as the best interests of the child dictate.
This section does not prohibit the payment or receipt of the following:

  • Fees paid for reasonable and customary services provided by the department of health and human resources or any licensed or duly authorized adoption or child-placing agency
  • Reasonable and customary legal, medical, hospital, or other expenses incurred in connection with the pregnancy, birth, and adoption proceeding
  • Fees and expenses included in any agreement in which a woman agrees to become a surrogate mother
  • Any fees or charges authorized by law or approved by a court in a proceeding relating to the placement plan, prospective placement, or placement of a minor child for adoption

Putative Father's Registry?
No. The putative father is entitled to notice of adoption proceedings if he is claiming to be the father, and his paternity of the child has been established.
Notice also is given to a putative father who has asserted or exercised parental rights and duties within 6 months of the child's birth, if he knew the whereabouts of the child.

Expenses?
Birth parent-
Reasonable and customary legal fees.
Medical and hospital costs.
Other expenses related to the pregnancy and adoption proceeding.

Department/Agency –
The department or an authorized placing agency may charge fees for reasonable and customary services.

Information provided in part by the Child Welfare Information Gateway.

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Credits: Sandra Hanks Benoiton

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