Maryland Adoption Laws, pg 7

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Infant Safe Haven Laws

Infant's Age
Cts & Jud Pro § 5-641

An infant may be relinquished within 3 days of his or her birth.

Who May Relinquish the Infant
Cts & Jud Pro § 5-641

The mother or other person may relinquish the infant. If the person leaving a newborn is not the mother of the newborn, the person shall have the approval of the mother to do so.

Who May Receive the Infant
Cts & Jud Pro § 5-641

The infant may be delivered to a responsible adult or a hospital or other facility designated by regulation.

Responsibilities of the Safe Haven Provider
Cts & Jud Pro § 5-641

A person who receives an infant shall take it to a hospital. The hospital shall notify the local department within 24 hours.

Immunity for the Provider
Cts & Jud Pro § 5-641

A responsible adult and a hospital or other designated facility that accepts a newborn under this section and an employee or agent of the hospital or facility shall be immune from civil liability or criminal prosecution for good faith actions taken related to the acceptance of or medical treatment or care of the newborn, unless injury to the newborn was caused by gross negligence or willful or wanton misconduct.

Protection for Relinquishing Parent
Cts & Jud Pro § 5-641

A person who leaves an unharmed newborn with a responsible adult within 3 days after the birth of the newborn, as determined within a reasonable degree of medical certainty, and does not express an intent to return for the newborn, shall be immune from civil liability or criminal prosecution for the act.

Effect on Parental Rights

This issue is not addressed in the statutes reviewed.
  • A person who receives an infant shall take it to a hospital.
  • The hospital shall notify the local department within 24 hours.

Immunity for the Provider

Statute: Cts & Jud Pro § 5-641

Yes

Protection for Relinquishing Parent

Statute: Cts & Jud Pro § 5-641

  • Immunity from civil liability or criminal prosecution

Effect on Parental Rights

Not addressed in statutes reviewed

Credits: Child Welfare Information Gateway (http://www.childwelfare.gov)

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