P (a putative father) obtained possession of his infant illegitimate child in 1947. In 1950 the mother took the child from the father and gave it to H and W, a married couple. H and W filed a petition for adoption in the juvenile court. P filed an intervening petition asking that custody of the child be awarded to him by virtue of his rights as a putative father. Trial court held against P on the grounds that (1) the putative father has no rights in the bastard child, and (2) even if he does, this father is not a fit person to have custody of the child. On Appeal, Held: dismissed on procedural grounds. (See 27 Wash. L. Rev. 228). As to the rights of the putative father, the Washington court for the first time indicated that the putative father, if fit, would have a right to custody of the child superior to that of everyone but the mother. Wade v. State, 39 Wn. 2d 744, 238 P. 2d 915 (1951).
Robert H. Peterson,
Domestic Relations—Rights of Putative Father,
28 Wash. L. Rev. & St. B.J.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.law.uw.edu/wlr/vol28/iss1/12