Can I Adopt My Partners Biological Child?
You’re with someone for years, have a meaningful bond with them and their children, but you want to take that next step. We’re not talking marriage because you may have already done that. We’re talking about making the child in your life a legal part of your life, by taking responsibility for them as a co-parent with your partner. It is possible to adopt your partner’s child and to take on a formal “stepparent” role. To get started, you’ll need to familiarize yourself with a specific type of adoption in Texas called a stepparent adoption. A Texas based LGBTQ lawyer can help with this.
What is a Step-Parent Adoption?
A stepparent adoption case is a unique situation in where you’re filing to adopt the child of your spouse, who is that child’s biological child. For remarried people or those who met in life after having children, this is a pretty easy adoption process.
You can start the stepparent adoption steps by seeking the termination of the absent parent’s rights. Even if the parent has never been a part of the child’s life, they need to be informed of the ongoing adoption and terminate their rights. They can choose to give up their rights to allow the adoption case to move forward. That would mean that they would not have any custody or visitation rights.
Are there Restrictions on Completing this Type of Adoption?
The most substantial restriction is that the other or absent parent does not have consent. Now, if they seem to be unable to be found, or it’s a situation where they’re not fit, then you could overcome this obstacle. Overcoming an obstacle such as them not being found would result in going forward to terminate their rights.
You would have to show that you made the best effort to reach the parent and that through extensive attempts, that person cannot be located. The other obstacle that people face is the caveat of the “child’s best interest.”
The child’s best interest bit is divided between a child consult and a home care inspecting. Basically, a state official will go to your home and meet with the child to ensure that there are no outlying concerns. Those concerns can stem from things such as criminal history or issues with employment. Anything that might make it seem that the child would be entering an unstable environment.
Will You Need a Texas Based LGBTQ Lawyer for Support?
The odds are you will need a Houston adoption attorney. These attorneys can help guide you through the home care and child meeting in a way that leaves you prepared and capable. Additionally, they can work to ensure that your paperwork is done correctly. When you have extensive paperwork to complete, such as for adoption, then one mistake can delay or even restart the entire process.
There are so many issues with documentation and so many obstacles that a Houston adoption lawyer is the guiding light that you will need.
Obstacles for the LGBTQ+ Community
Few communities face as many issues with adoption. The greater issue is that most adoption agencies have values that don’t line up with the LGBT community. There were outright bans on the LGBT community adopting children at all back in the 1970s. While those days have passed, there’s still some struggle, except in stepparent adoption situations.
First, these situations often close out the possible issues as you’re not going through an agency or dealing with religious groups. Second, if there is no finding the other parent, then you don’t have to worry about them contesting the adoption. Finally, working with an LGBT-friendly family attorney can reduce the help you might have needed from government employees who might not have wanted to provide aid.
The biggest obstacle you may face is from the other parent not agreeing with a member of the LGBT community adopting their child. But in that event, they may see the need to take a more active role in their child’s life.
Knowing When to Get A Texas Based LGBTQ Lawyer Involved
Eddington & Worley is a Texas based law firm that helps LGBTQ+ individuals. With us, you can be sure that you’ll have the proper guidance and support through the unique obstacles that your family faces. When you schedule your initial appointment, one of our star adoption attorneys will go through every detail of your situation. As your partner is the biological parent of the child, you’ll have a slightly different route than someone adopting through an agency.
Get the know-how and legal experience. You need to complete your adoption quickly and with as little stress as possible.
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