Most of the adoptive parents who work with Heimer Law on their adoption journey choose to adopt newborn babies. Most of the babies are the result of an unplanned pregnancy, most often with unmarried mothers. But married couples can also find themselves experiencing an unplanned pregnancy. How is adoption different when the birth mother is married?

Reasons married couples place a child for adoption

The reasons expectant parents choose to relinquish their child for adoption include financial concerns, already having as many children as they planned, and just not being ready to be parents. A married woman may want to finish college, the marriage may be in a crisis, or the couple may not want children. When the birth mother is married, just as when she is single, she may know that placing her child with someone who is ready for parenthood will give that child a stronger start in life.

Choosing adoption can be a very emotional decision for expectant parents whether they are married or not. Married couples may also face social stigma or disapproval from friends and family. Expectant parents need strong support whether they are married or single.


The husband of an expectant mother in Arkansas is legally the father of her child. This is true even if everyone knows that the father is someone else, and even if the mother was already pregnant when they married. This means that the husband of the expectant mother must consent to the adoption of the baby.

A single expectant mother can arrange for her baby’s adoption without the father’s consent if the father does not have a relationship with the child. A married woman does not have this option.

It is important, when adopting a baby relinquished by a married couple, to work out the adoption plan with both the husband and the wife.

The legal process

Whether the expectant parents are married or not, the process of adoption is the same. The first step is a call to an adoption professional. Heimer Law is here to be with the expectant parents and the adoptive parents  throughout the process.

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The next step is an adoption plan. The expectant parents can decide whether they want an open adoption or a closed adoption. They can also choose the adoptive parents they would prefer as the family for the child.

In an open adoption, the expectant parents may maintain contact with the child and the adoptive family. The details of this arrangement can vary from one case to another. There is no one right way to plan an open adoption.

Whether the birth mother is married or not, she will have 10 days after the baby’s birth to change her mind and decide to keep the baby. Once the adoption is finalized, the adoptive parents are the child’s parents permanently.

With Heimer Law, you can be confident of support and expert guidance through the entire adoption journey.