Roseville Adoption Attorney
Adoption Eligibility Requirements in California
In the state of California, you need to be a minimum of 10 years older than the child you wish to adopt. However, there are exceptions for relative or stepparent adoptions. All adoptive parents have to complete a home study, as well as a background check, in order to be approved to adopt.
Types of Adoption in California
- Independent Adoption – This is an adoption that involves the birth parents and adoptive parents. The communication is direct between both parties but is sometimes done using a go-between. While not all states allow independent adoptions, California does allow independent adoptions. These adoptions are sometimes referred to as private adoptions or open adoptions in the state.
- Agency Adoption – An agency adoption is one that involves the adoptive parents and the birth parents using a public or private agency to complete the adoption. Private agencies handle a variety of cases, while public agencies deal with children who have been abused, abandoned, or orphaned and are wards of the state.
- Other Types of Adoption – There are several other types of adoptions that are not as common as the two above. International adoption is one sort of adoption that involves parents adopting children from another country. Adoption through identification is the combination of an agency and independent adoption in which parties find each other independently then turn to an agency to get the adoption completed. Stepparent adoptions and adult adoptions are also possible.
Adoption can accomplish numerous purposes. It can provide a stable home for a child in need, it can enable a couple to start a family, and it can solidify existing relationships in blended families. As you probably know, adoption is not a quick and simple process. It is often complicated and bureaucratic, requiring skilled legal representation from an experienced attorney who understands how the system works.
Navigating the Adoption Process
We provide assistance with domestic, stepparent, and grandparent adoptions, background checks and home studies, termination of parental rights, court hearings, and more. If you are interested in adopting a child or if you need assistance with another adoption-related matter, we can help. At Cianci Law, PC, our Roseville adoption attorneys can assist you in navigating the difficult but fruitful legal process of adoption. We regularly represent both birth parents/biological mothers and those who intend to adopt.
We can advise and represent you in:
- Understanding the legal and financial aspects of intrastate or interstate adoption
- Completing the required paperwork in a correct and timely manner
- Preparing for background checks and home studies that are required
- Court proceedings, including the adoption finalization hearing
- Stepparent adoptions involving children who are already in the family, including children of recently remarried parents
- Grandparent adoptions, kinship adoptions, and custody matters involving extended family members
- LGBT adoption and same-sex adoption matters
- Single-parent adoption
- Cases where adoption is disputed by a biological parent or where termination of parental rights is a factor
What to Expect in a Home Study
For any family that is trying to adopt, a home study will be required. This is a process whereby a licensed social agency or worker assesses the adopting family and writes a report about them. The study needs to be completed in the state in which you reside.
You can expect numerous things during the home study, including:
- Paperwork. There will typically be a great deal of paperwork you need to fill out and submit to the social worker. This may include tax records, birth or marriage certificates, autobiographies, and more. You may also have to complete a background check, among other things.
- Interviews. All members of your household, including children, will need to undergo an interview with the social worker. You will probably be asked about your views on parenting, your parenting skills, your life story, and more.
- Adoption education. You will be required to undergo training so that you can learn about adoption, raising a child from a different culture/ethnicity, parenting and discipline strategies, medical conditions, and more.
- A home visit. The social worker will meet with you at your home and complete a home visit. The intention of this is to assess your home’s suitability for adoption, as well as its safety.
- A review process. The social worker will create a draft of your home study report once they have completed all the required meetings with your family and have collected all the necessary information and paperwork. The placing agency will have a chance to review the report. You will then most likely be given a chance by the agency to edit any personal information.
What Biological Fathers Need to Know
The biological father of the child who is to be adopted needs to be given notice of the adoption, the father can only block the adoption under certain circumstances, such as if:
- Within a short period of time after he knew about the mother’s pregnancy, he did everything he could to take care of the child and mother, both financially and emotionally.
- Both the birth father and the mother have signed a voluntary declaration of paternity to list him on the child’s birth certificate.
- He has publicly declared the child as his own and has received the child into his home.
- The mother is married to him, or was married to him within 300 days of the child’s birth.
Unless the father fulfills at least one of the above requirements, he will not be able to prevent the adoption from occurring. Contact us online or call us at (916) 797-1575 to schedule a reduced-fee consultation with a lawyer.