Sometimes the birth mother will state that she does not know the identity of the birth father. This may or may not be true. If the birth mother gives a reasonable explanation of the facts and does so under oath, her statement will be accepted by the court. The court will not ask for embarrasing details. There are, after all, only a few ways in which it is possible for a birth mother not to know the ientity of the birth father. Perhaps she met him at a bar, only knew him one night, and only had his first name. This happens a lot. Also, there may be several men involved. If this is the case and they may be identified, then each one must be either served with notice of the adoption proceeding, consent, or receive notice pursuant to the Putative Father Registry.
Virginia's adoption statutes specifically provide that a birth mother may sign an affidavit, which is a statement under oath, that she does not know the identity of the birth father. If she does so, the affidavit will be made a part of the court file and no further notice to a birth father will be necessary.
There have been cases in which a birth mother fraudulently withheld the identity of the birth father, because of fear or other reasons, and the true birth father sought to attack the adoption because his rights were violated. This is why it is so important that a qualified adoption attorney take every necessary legal step to protect against such a case.