Although adopting a stepchild is not as challenging as most other adoption processes, it is still full of its own unique obstacles. To overcome these difficulties and expand your role as a parent in your stepchild’s life, it is crucial to hire an attorney with extensive experience in handling such matters. Continue reading to learn more about the process of adopting a stepchild.
Strengthening Your Bond as a Family
Before you begin learning more about the adoption process, make sure you spent enough time discussing it with your spouse, your stepchild, and other children you may have. Adopting your stepchild is a big step and everyone should be emotionally prepared for it and all that it entails. Every family is unique, so consider your choices carefully and make sure this is the right path for you to take.
If you choose to move forward with the adoption, one of the biggest obstacles you will face will occur if the child’s other biological parent contests the adoption. Keep in mind that when you adopt your stepchild, it will essentially strip the other parent of all rights to the child. As a result, that parent will no longer have visitation rights or any sort of role in the child’s life unless you and your spouse permit it.
If the parent does not have a close relationship with the child, relinquishing these rights may not be too difficult a task since it will also put an end to any financial obligations that the parent had to the child. If you cannot obtain the other parent’s consent, however, you may still petition the court to terminate parental rights, so you can proceed with the adoption.
Below are some circumstances in which a parent’s rights may be terminated:
- The parent abandoned the child by failing to communicate or provide financial support.
- The court deemed the parent unfit due to mental disturbance, neglect, abuse, substance abuse, incarceration, or failure to visit.
- The presumed father is not the child’s birth father.
To ensure the best possible results in your stepchild adoption case, make sure you hire an attorney as soon as possible.
Discuss the Details of Your Case with a Compassionate Family Law Attorney Today
If you are attempting to adopt your stepchild, you will need a skilled legal advocate on your side. At The Virga Law Firm, P.A., our team is committed to providing exceptional legal guidance, so you can expand your role as a parent.
Call our law office today at (800) 822-5170 to set up a consultation.