Grow Your Family with the Help of an Adoption Attorney
The process of adopting a child is complex. The steps involved can vary substantially depending on where you are adopting the child from, their age, and more. Our team at The Family Law Firm of Donna J Smiedt in Arlington, TX, can help you navigate the complexities of the adoption process, making it as smooth as possible for everyone involved. An adoption attorney from our firm can work with the adoption agency or the biological parents to ensure all legal requirements are followed and your rights are protected. Adoption is a major life decision and should not be entered into lightly. If you are considering adopting a child, contact our office online or call us at (817) 572-9900 today.
When you adopt a child, you assume the legal rights and responsibilities of a biological parent. There are several types of adoption you can pursue, including:
- Agency adoption: You can work with a public or private adoption agency, which can coordinate the process for you.
- Private adoption: If you decide to forego an agency, you can work out an arrangement with the biological parents directly with the help of a family law attorney.
- Relative adoption: Another type of private adoption occurs when a relative of the biological parent adopts the child. Common examples include stepparent or grandparent adoptions.
- International adoption: Another option is adopting a child from another country. In this case, you will need to obtain an immigrant visa for the child, among other requirements.
Whatever route you choose, our team can help you navigate the complexities associated with the adoption process and ensure you meet all the necessary requirements.
How to Get Started
The first step is to decide which type of adoption to pursue. If you choose to work through an agency, keep in mind that there are many agencies which specialize in adoption and it is crucial you work with a reputable organization during the process.
We understand how important the decision to adopt a child is. The last thing you want to worry about when you decide to grow your family is legal obstacles.
Some agencies require potential adoptive parents to sign contracts or pay fees early in the process. Our team can review any paperwork provided by the agency before you sign to make sure you remain protected.
Parental Rights' Considerations
For an adoption to move ahead, the rights of the biological parent must first be terminated, either voluntarily or through a court decision. A parent can voluntarily give up their rights by signing an Affidavit of Relinquishment of Parental Rights. There are several situations which result in an involuntary termination of rights, including:
- Abandonment of the child
- Voluntarily leaving the child in the care of someone else for more than six months
- Endangering the child
- Failing to support the child for at least a year
In some situations, it can become complicated to obtain a termination of parental rights. If you are adopting foster children, you may need to attend multiple hearings before a decision is reached. Our family law attorneys can assist you with any legal hurdles during this time to make the process as stress-free as possible.
Find the Support You Need
At our firm, we understand how important the decision to adopt a child is. The last thing you want to worry about when you decide to grow your family is legal obstacles. Our team can assist you throughout the entire process to protect your rights and help you add a new member to your family. For more information about how we can help, contact our firm online or call (817) 572-9900 to speak with a member of our team today.