Kidnapping Is Legal in Utah

Colby Nielsen and his daughter KayleeUtah essentially allows adoption professionals and immoral adoptive couples to kidnap babies from their fathers. When you read an article about a birth father who has lost his child, it’s almost always out of Utah. Colby Nielsen had his daughter taken from him on 11/18. He’s on the child’s birth certificate, and the child was in his custody after birth, but, because he’s not married to the child’s mother, he must go through Utah’s difficult and expensive legal hurdles to get her back from the prospective adoptive parents, reportedly Brad and Miranda Larsen.

These parents are not innocent bystanders who know nothing about what’s going on. They have hired one of the best – and least ethical – adoption attorneys in Utah. They know they’re taking a baby from a family who loves her. They simply don’t care.

Nielsen’s family has set up a Go Fund Me account for his legal expenses. Utah law is heavily influenced by the more conservative teachings of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (LDS, or Mormons). The Church believes that adoption is preferable to being raised by an unmarried parent. Consequently, the law sets an absurdly high bar for unmarried fathers. It is unlikely that Nielsen will win custody of his daughter in Utah. He will have to do what other unmarried fathers have done: Appeal to a higher court.

I am sickened by adoptive parents who behave this way. No wonder we are called “adoptoraptors” by vocal opponents of adoption. This father was involved in his girlfriend’s pregnancy. He believed that he and his girlfriend were going to raise the baby together. The baby  had a room ready for her when she came home from the hospital. But the girlfriend’s parents apparently pressured her into placing the baby for adoption. (There’s a special place in hell for them, I’m sure.) It doesn’t matter to Utah, the grandparents, the girlfriend, or the Larsens that Colby Nielsen loves his daughter, wants her, and is perfectly able and willing to care for her.

Once again, we need adoption laws at the federal level to stop this form of legalized kidnapping from happening.

13 thoughts on “Kidnapping Is Legal in Utah

  1. If this were completely true I would agree that it is discusting, who wouldn’t. However just because you put in some provocative (and possibly exaggerated) words like ‘kidnapping is legal’ does not make that the truth behind what is happening in these cases. Infusing emotional wording to try and get people to side with your perspective is manipulative and disingenuous.

    If these men truly loved and cared about these babies before they were born, then why didn’t they show a commitment and marry these women who they got pregnant? We’re they perhaps married to someone else at the time? We’re they moving on to other women instead of the mother of their child? Did the mother simply not want to be around these men any longer? If the fathers cared so desperately for this unborn child and wanted truly to be in its life what actions and influence we’re they putting into supporting the mother before the baby was born? My guess is not much, if any, or the courts would have taken that into account before the adoption. Just because this father was perhaps seen in the company of the unwed mother once in a while does not mean he was putting any proper amount of financial and other support toward the mother before the baby was born.

    If it is legal where they live for a mother, who presumably has full and sole legal custody of a child, to put that child up for adoption, without consulting a biological father, then nothing wrong was done here. Is it legal for an adoption to take place when a divorced couple has lopsided custody rights over a child, or do they both need to sign off on the legal documents? Just because you throw out the term ‘least ethical’ when describing the adoption attorney does not automatically make it true. The real question is why does the father have no legal custody of the baby in order to force the need for his signature to be included to allow the adoption. Being seen with the mother before birth, and holding a baby at the hospital for a photo, does not constitute a legal custody of the child. If there was true legal custody shared between them then the adoption presumably could not have been completed.

    Now perhaps this young man was unaware of what he would need to do (ahead of time) to be able to be properly considered as having at least partial legal custody of this baby when it was born. If this is the case then I feel bad for him and his lack of understanding and preparation. However, maybe he should be looking for some peace of mind knowing the baby is now in the hands of a good and prepared adoption couple rather than festering over the list of bad choices he made that brought him to this point.

    • Clearly, you did not read the About section of the Facebook page to which I linked. If you had, you would have discovered that this baby was literally taken from her father’s arms. He had had custody of her since she came home from the hospital. He and the baby’s mother had discussed marriage, but had decided not to go that route, yet they were still planning on raising the baby together. The baby’s mother’s parents pressured her into placing the baby for adoption. Nielsen did not agree. His name is on the birth certificate. He was the one who had cared for her since birth. He lost her because Utah’s laws allow biological mothers to place children without the consent of the biological fathers. That is kidnapping.
      I appreciate you taking the time to comment. I do wish you would have taken the time to understand the topic beforehand. Certainly, you have judged all biological fathers and lumped them into the “deadbeat dad” category. That is not OK, to put it mildly. While some biological fathers do disappear, many want to be a part of their children’s lives and are cut out by their children’s mothers. Even a married father had his daughter placed for adoption in Utah, and had to go to court to get her back. Utah’s laws are unethical. Period.

      • As I said, if what you’re saying is completely true then it is indeed discusting, evil, and wrong. If their laws truely allow this kind of thing to happen then yes it needs to be changed.

        I am just replying with my opinion because I am no lawyer and I do not know the specifics of Utah laws to refute if this actually is possible. I also do not know these people specifically to know the full conditions of the situation. I only contend that it is often my experience that people try slant facts or use carefully selected grammar to garner favor and make their own perspectives appear to be the only possible correct ones.

        Examples of things you wrote that concern me:
        ‘Literally taken from her father’s arms’ may be true. However, if he had no legal standing regarding the child (not any form of proper legal custody perhaps) then a policeman sent to retrieve the child, or a social worker, or some other court appointed representative did what was expected and legal. It still sounds scary, but what if it were actually appropriate? That doesn’t make it kidnapping.

        ‘He had had custody’ may mean that he was given a visitation of the child, or that he simply had literally been holding her at the time. If you mean more than this then say it with more definition. How long was he with the child? Hours, days, weeks? How much legal custody did he have? How much visitation rights did he have? Without a marriage, legal contract, between the mother and father of the child the rights do become complicated.

        ‘His name was on the birth certificate’ really has little meaning these days and is no indication of his actual interaction in the childs life or how much support has actually been provided, so that point doesn’t really change much.

        ‘He was the one who cared for her since birth’ makes it sound like he and only he had the baby for a long term of time. Is that true? Or is it just a tricky way of saying at the hospital after birth the father held the baby right up until the legal people came and took the baby away? Is he the only one that took care of the baby, or were others involved as well, and if so how much time compared to others? Was this days, weeks, or months later?

        You mention that in another case a married father of a child was unable to stop an adoption from taking place (which presumably was against his will all along) and is now fighting it in court to get the child back. Now if that is fully true then absolutely there is something wrong with these laws in Utah. This would also be a much stronger argument against any such law in Utah then this unmarried father example. If it is true and there aren’t some more details being left out, then something does need to change. It seems rather impossible to me actually, but I can not refute it since I do not know the facts. Pointing out the name or the case for this example would be helpful or linking another article which perhaps discusses this other case.

        • So basically, you didn’t bother to read the information about this case, nor did you bother to check out any other information about Utah’s laws, yet, you are still blaming this young man for … what? You don’t even know. You’re grasping at straws. If you had bothered to read the information, or even just my response to your comment, you would know that this young man took his child home from the hospital, to her own room, which was ready and waiting for her. He had physical custody, because the bio mom’s parents were pressuring her into adoption. Bio mom hadn’t even seen the baby since they left the hospital. In any other state, his consent for the adoption would be required. Utah specifically cuts biological fathers out of their children’s lives to make it “adoption-friendly.”

          In the case of Terry Achane, a man who was married to his wife, he had to fight in court for his own daughter. His wife went to Utah to place the child for adoption while Achane was fulfilling his National Guard duty, I believe. He was in the armed forces. Because Utah allows women to place children without their fathers’ consent, he had to fight to get her back. Ultimately, he did, though it took many months.

          The law needs to change, because marriage isn’t what defines a father. It is unacceptable to me that Utah allows – and even encourages – women to cut their babies’ fathers out of their lives. I cannot believe that you are defending a practice that you clearly know nothing about.

    • You’re kidding with this right? Did you even read the article? There are a LOT of “presumedly”s and “my guess”es in your comment. This child was taken from her father’s arms in his home. I cannot imagine horror of another person being able to sign away rights to my child and me not having any say. Yet it is happening in Utah. This is not okay. Mothers AND fathers have rights to their children. If the mother wanted to sign the rights away, she should have done so to the father. Instead, he is cut out completely. I cannot believe the nerve of the adoptive parents in fighting this. THIS IS NOT THEIR CHILD. This child has a legal, biological father who cares for her. Laws need to be changed. The word needs to get out there. “Kidnapping is Legal in Utah” may be a provocative title, but it is TRUE!

    • “Now perhaps this young man was unaware of what he would need to do (ahead of time) to be able to be properly considered as having at least partial legal custody of this baby when it was born. If this is the case then I feel bad for him and his lack of understanding and preparation. However, maybe he should be looking for some peace of mind knowing the baby is now in the hands of a good and prepared adoption couple rather than festering over the list of bad choices he made that brought him to this point.”

      Strike this as one of the worst excuses ever for stealing another person’s child and blaming him for being the victim of a ‘legal’ crime.

      You’ve said repeatedly in your comments that you are unaware of the law in Utah, and in the cases mentioned by Robyn C. You didn’t even read any background on this young man and his story. I’m truly curious why you’ve bothered to comment, since you don’t seem interested enough in the facts that you so clearly are accusing Robyn of coloring.

      Just so you are aware, the laws in Utah are stacked against biological fathers. Suggesting that this young man should have been more aware of Utah’s ridicullous, labrynthian adoption laws to protect his right to parent his own child is nothing more than shortsighted and reeks of a lack of compassion.

  2. As an adoptive parent, I am horrified by this. The uninformed public always assumes biological parents who are young and unmarried should always place their child for adoption yet they fail to understand the long term effects of adoption and the fact that plenty of young and unmarried people have raised wonderful children successfully. If one capable parent, either parent, does not wish to place then adoption is not the answer. I would hate to have to look my child in the eye and explain myself if I had kept them from being raised by a capable and willing parent. Thankfully ethics and morals from start to present are the basis of relationship we still have today with our children’s first parents. Both first parents.

  3. As an adoptive parent, I am appalled. I’mpraying for this father and child to be reunited. I can’t even imagine someone stealing my kid then someone telling me the law is on their side! So little faith left in this country. Smh.

  4. This is terrible. I wish the adoption industry as a whole would take a strong and vocal stance against this (including not doing adoptions in Utah).

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