Chapter 210, Section 1, allows a “person of full age may petition the probate court in the county where he resides for leave to adopt as his child another person younger than himself, unless such other person is his or her wife or husband, or brother, sister, uncle or aunt, of the whole or half blood.”
When a same sex married couple have a child through vitro fertilization (IVF) with the assistance of a known, or unknown, sperm donor they are not require to notify the sperm donor parties of the adoption as the “plain language” in the statute does not require it.
“G. L. c. 210, § 4, requires notice of a petition for adoption to be given only to those persons from whom written consent to the adoption must be obtained. See G. L. c. 210, §§ 2, 4. No notice is required for persons not expressly included in G. L. c. 210, § 2.” Adoption of a Minor, 471 Mass. 373 (2015). Notice is required to be given to the “lawful parent.” The Court finds that “lawful parentage, and its associated rights and responsibilities, is conferred by statute on the consenting spouse of a married couple whose child is conceived by one woman of the marriage, through the use of assisted reproductive technology consented to by both [parents].” Id.
There are circumstances where a “punitive father” may request to establish his paternity. Some of those circumstances would be where the child’s mother was married to someone else at the time of the child’s conception or within 300 days after termination of marriage, or the mother was married when the child was born.