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Legal Information: Indiana


October 27, 2020

If my child was conceived from rape, can the offender's rights be terminated?

If your child was conceived as the result of rape, you can file a petition with the juvenile court or probate court to terminate the parent-child relationship between the child and the offender.1 However, if you were 18 or older when the rape occurred, you have to file the petition for termination within 180 days after the birth of the child. If you were under 18 when the rape occurred, you have to file the petition within two years after you turn 18 (so, before your 20th birthday).2 The judge can grant the petition terminating the offender’s rights if the judge believes that it is in the best interests of the child to do so.3

1 Ind. Code § 31-35-3.5-3
2 Ind. Code § 31-35-3.5-4
3 See Ind. Code §§ 31-35-3.5-5; 31-35-3.5-6