Special Instructions & Information

Terminated Parental Rights
If a higher court has terminated one of the parent's rights, a copy of that order must be filed with the Probate Court. The parent whose rights were terminated does not need to sign the relinquishment form or be served in any other way. This does not mean a parent who was given full custody. It means total termination of parental rights.

Served Papers

If a parent who does not sign the Acknowledgment and Consent Form has a current or last known address, then that parent must either be served personally by a Sheriff's Deputy or by certified mail, depending on the situation. Additional fees will apply.

Newspaper Notices

If either parent does not, will not, or cannot sign the Acknowledgment and Consent, and the petitioner knows of no current or last known address for that parent, a citation must be published in the county legal organ (The Times-Georgian). The notice must state that a petition for guardianship for the child/children has been filed in the Probate Court.

The missing parent or other interested party is given a certain date and time by which any objection to guardianship must be filed. When such notice by publication is required, a fee for the legal ad must be paid to the newspaper.