Adoption is anything but a simple process. There’s a great deal of paperwork, safeguards, checkpoints, and other steps that must be accomplished before the adoption can be finalized. The process is typically not a quick one, either. Each adoption is unique. Sometimes, all parties are agreeable, and sometimes they aren’t. Adoptions can carry a wild set of complex emotions as well. Wherever you are in the process, Cianci Law can help you find your way through it.
Whether you are wanting to adopt yourself, biological parents who just want what’s right for their child, or a parent who doesn’t want to give up your child, we have experience that can help you navigate the adoption process. From the outside, it seems like the adoption should be fairly straightforward. We’ve often found that it is anything but that. There’s a lot that must be done to finalize an adoption, and any mistake in the complex paperwork and other steps involved can cause substantial delays. Fortunately, our expertise can help you properly fill out forms and guide you through the adoption process. We can keep your adoption from running into any delays and help it go more smoothly.
While each adoption is unique, there are some general steps that are followed in an Orange County or Southern Orange County adoption. These steps are required in almost every case, except perhaps the occasional circumstance where the birth parents are unable to provide consent or are disqualified from needing to do so. The necessary steps for adoption in California are:
Broadly speaking, California law says that an adult can adopt any minor child. However, the specifics of each case determine the type of adoption that can occur. Each form of adoption has its own set of criteria for allowing it to proceed. One overall restriction on adoption is that the adopting adult is required to be at least ten years older than the child, except in the cases where the adopting adult is the child’s:
If you have any questions about your eligibility to adopt, contact us today to review your case.
There are a few different types of adoption, each adding its own complications to the adoption process. We can help you understand what category your adoption may fall into, but some of the categories of adoption include:
One of the more confusing elements of adoption can be the process of getting the consent needed from all necessary parties. It may not always be possible to receive consent from all parties involved. The law provides a plan for these situations, but it is not always clear how it applies to each unique adoption. One of the things we can help with in the adoption process is understanding who is required to consent and how to get that consent. In general, though, the following parties are expected to give their permission in any adoption case:
If the adoptive parent is married and not legally separated, then their spouse must consent to the adoption. They are not, by default, also named as an adoptive parent of the child. They must notify the court through a written statement if they would also like to be named.
There are also a few other rules of note regarding consent for the adoption, including:
A home study must be conducted before your adoption can be finalized. A home study must be conducted by a licensed private adoption agency or the California Department of Social Services. There are situations in which using a private agency may be beneficial, and other situations in which using the Department may be the best choice. A social worker will be responsible for overseeing the study. Some of the general components of a home study are:
While we often help adoptions go through, we understand that there are times when some parents are having their parental rights taken from them against their will. This can be a painful experience, and it is one that we can help defend against. If possible, we can work with you to help you keep your right to raise your child.
In California, you are not required to have an attorney as a birth parent going through the adoption process. However, California must offer the birth mother separate legal counsel to protect her best interests. The adoptive parents typically cover these legal fees, who provide at least $500.00 for expenses. Sometimes the parents will offer more financial support in favor of the birth mother and her representation. A situation in which you might need an attorney is if you decide that you want to go back on the adoption process.
The adoption process can feel a bit daunting at times. While the procedures and hurdles to adoption are meant to protect the children involved, they can sometimes be an unnecessary obstacle. Any slip-up in the process can lead to lengthy delays that aren’t ideal for anyone, especially the child involved. We want to help you finalize your adoption as quickly and smoothly as possible. If you would like to take advantage of our skills, experience, and expertise, then contact us today.
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