Orange County Step Parent Adoption Lawyers
Blended families are difficult in any type of situation. However, the adoption by a step parent of a child often helps to ease the tension of multi-family households and brings everyone closer. Step parent adoption is not always a good idea for every family, but in certain circumstances it serves an important role in the future of the family. If you are considering step parent adoption, be sure to consult with a Orange County step parent adoption attorney who can answer any questions you have about the process.
Why Choose Step Parent Adoption
There are many reasons why a step parent chooses to adopt their step child, many stemming from the death of a birth parent. The step of creating a legally binding relationship with the child solidifies their future with the child and is a big step to take. Step parent adoption may also be the best step to take in situations where the other parent has relinquished care of the child to the other birth parent. Step Parent adoption can still apply to domestic partnerships and not just marriages.
A legal adoption protects the child in the future and gives the step parent enhanced rights in terms of schooling, health and medical decisions, and gives the child added financial security and protection of their assets. A child is not able to inherit from a step parent unless the step parent adopts the child. In the case of extreme disasters or accidents, a step parent may want to make an adoption legal to protect the child in case both parents are killed in an accident. While a properly executed will can also provide for inheritance rights, it gives an added peace of mind that the child is able to legally inherit through their status.
The Adoption Process
The step parent wishing to adopt the child must first file a petition with the court and include any outside agreements which may be between the birth parent and the step parent regarding the child. At this point the court may decide to conduct an investigation and may interview the child. If both natural birth parents are alive, the court must have evidence that one parent gave up their parental rights to the child or their rights were terminated. It is difficult for any court or regulatory agency to terminate parental rights, and therefore this must be carefully documented before any adoption can take place. If one birth parent is missing or refuses to consent, California courts may refuse to allow the adoption to go forward. Therefore, keeping all documentation of the process is an important part to guarantee an easy adoption.
Free Initial Legal Consultation With Orange County Step Parent Adoption Lawyer
Step parent adoption requires a deep degree of understanding between the child involved and their parents. The Boyd Law family and divorce lawyers in Orange County recognize that this is a delicate situation and work hard to make sure that their assistance leads to the special parent-child relationship. Contact our Orange County office today for your initial free consultation and our Orange County step parent adoption attorneys will assist you in beginning the initial steps toward adoption.