I. Doing what you need to do to get notice of the adoption petition.
Your rights as a father about getting notice of an adoption vary depending on whether you are a presumed father or a putative father.A. Difference between presumed and putative father.
Presumed fathers are men who were married to the mother during the pregnancy or have legally established their paternity before the adoption petition was filed. Putative fathers are men who were not married to the mother during the pregnancy and have not established their paternity before the adoption petition was filed. They are alleged biological fathers only. If you are not married to mom, and have not established paternity legally, you are a putative father. If you establish paternity after the adoption petition is filed, then you most likely are still a putative father, and the state's putative father laws still apply to you.
Both types of fathers are entitled to notice of an adoption proceeding involving their child before the adoption can proceed. But putative fathers usually must take active measures to receive notice of the adoption. Presumed fathers, however, are usually entitled by law to actual notice of an adoption. In addition, the standard for terminating a presumed father's parental rights in adoption is higher than that for putative fathers. As a putative father then, you need to pursue presumed fatherhood. Obviously, you may lack time to become a presumed father before the adoption petition is filed. Thus, you must pursue your parental rights yourself by doing certain things.
Those things vary from state to state. Generally you must sign the putative father registry of the state where the petition is ultimately filed--if that state has a registry--and formally acknowledge paternity.