Phoenix Adoption Lawyer
Adoption provides individuals with the ability to bring a new member into their family. An adoptive parent is indistinguishable from a birth parent under the law, however adoption can be very complicated. Depending on the type of adoption, adoptive parents can face many obstacles. At the very least, adoptive parents must have the financial means to support a new family member. Furthermore, agencies and birth parents ordinarily impose additional requirements that adoptive parents must meet before adopting a child.
International vs. Domestic Adoption
Adoptive parents have several types of adoption to choose from. To begin with, adoptions can be either domestic or international. While international adoptions provide a greater availability of children for adoption, they also carry a unique set of issues, as adoptive parents must abide by both U.S. laws and the laws of the child’s home country. Domestic adoptions are available through agencies or directly from birth parents. Either of these methods have strict requirements that prospective adoptive parents must meet. Adoptive parents should work with legal counsel of an Arizona adoption attorney to terminate the birth parent’s parental rights and meet other formalities.
Open vs. Closed Adoption
Adoptive parents also may choose between an open and closed adoption. Closed adoptions are the most common type of adoption. Where an adoption is closed, the birth parents are not given an opportunity to develop any sort of relationship with the adoptive family. Once the adopted child is placed in the adoptive family’s care, the birth parents relinquish their rights and have no further communication with the child or the adoptive family. Open adoptions, on the other hand, provide birth parents with an opportunity to maintain contact with the child and adoptive parents after they terminate their parental rights. Open adoptions are generally only protected and enforced under the law of contracts, so legal counsel is essential in arranging such a situation.
Stepparents in combined families frequently seek to adopt a stepchild in order to obtain enforceable parental rights. Before proceeding with one of these adoptions, however, the biological parent must relinquish his or her parental rights. Biological parents who consent to the adoption voluntarily terminate their parental rights. Parental rights can be involuntarily terminated as well, however only under extreme circumstances. Stepparents looking to adopt their stepchildren should seek the assistance of legal counsel to help facilitate the process.
An Arizona family law attorney is best suited to help with adoption, and JacksonWhite can help east valley residents and Arizona residents with the process. To speak with an Arizona adoption attorney, call Tim Durkin, at (480) 779-7972.
We proudly serve families in Mesa, Chandler, Gilbert and all of the state of Arizona.