Generally speaking, Arizona stepparents are not liable for their spouse’s child from a previous marriage unless they legally adopt the child. In addition, Arizona stepparents can adopt a stepchild in order to obtain enforceable parental rights.
Before a stepparent can proceed with the adoption process in Arizona, the child’s biological parent must first relinquish his or her parental rights. Once the child’s biological parent consents to the adoption, and voluntary terminates their parental rights, the stepparent can move forward with the adoption process. Depending on the circumstances, a biological parent’s rights can be involuntarily terminated through court orders. Stepparents in Arizona hoping to adopt a stepchild should seek the assistance of an Arizona family law attorney to help facilitate the process.
The Arizona family law firm of JacksonWhite can assist individuals in the Phoenix metro area with all types of adoption cases. Our Arizona adoption attorney Tim Durkin has helped numerous stepparents throughout the Phoenix metro area successfully adopt a stepchild, and can assess your case during a confidential family law consultation. For more information, or to schedule your confidential consultation with Tim, call 480.428.2663.