Step Parent Adoptions
There are occasions when a step parent wishes to become the legal, adoptive parent of their stepchildren. These adoptions are one of my favorite areas of practice. It is so fulfilling to watch a family be created.
Adoptive parents have the right to carry children on their health insurance, participate in important decisions about their child's life (such as decisions surrounding medical care or education) and the adoptive parent will have the same legal rights as any biological parent. From a legal standpoint, adopted children are in the same position as natural-born children to inherit from their adoptive parents.
In stepparent adoptions, the parental rights of the non-petitioning parent have to be addressed. Sometimes, the rights of that parent have to be terminated. This can be done on a voluntary basis but in some instances, involuntary termination is necessary.
An involuntary termination of parental rights is appropriate when the non petitioning parent will not consent but there are statutory grounds to terminate. When the step parent adopts the child and the non petitioning parent's rights are terminated, that means that they are no longer responsible for paying child support. They also lose all other rights and responsibilities towards that child.
If the child you would like to adopt is over the age of 14, then you will need that child's consent. I would be honored to offer my services to stepparents who wish to become the legally adoptive parents of the children who are already such an important part of their lives. Let Sekula Law Offices help protect your family's future.