All interested parties, including natural parent(s), shall receive proper notice of pending termination and/or adoption proceedings. A copy of the relevant petition and subsequent hearing notice should be served on all interested parties, e.g. persons with parental rights to the minor child(ren) involved. Acceptable methods of service include personal service or certified mail, return receipt requested, restricted delivery. Proof of service should be filed with the court and/or submitted at the time of the hearing.

If you do not have a good address for an interested party, you can petition the court to permit service by an alternate method. Often, the alternate method of service permitted is publication in the newspaper where the party was last known to reside. The court would indicate for how many weeks the notice must be published in the newspaper. The newspaper provides a certification as to the publication that can be submitted to the court as verification that the required publication was completed. This adds to the costs of the termination or adoption matter as it can cost several hundred dollars to publish. You should also be careful to include all necessary information in the publication so that the court can accept the publication as acceptable service.