Step parent adoptions are quite common these days and not as complex as many people think.
The fact of the matter when it comes to step-parent adoptions is that they are a whole lot easier and faster than other forms of adoption. This is because many of the states tend to bypass the home-study requirements as well as the waiting or adjustment period.
“It’s best to check these issues out with a highly-skilled family law attorney because there are also some states that mandate the custodial parent has to be married to the step-parent at least one year before adoption is allowed to proceed,” indicated Gerald A. Maggio, of the Maggio Law Firm in Irvine, California. In these instances, only the step-parent is allowed to petition to adopt the children. The custodial parent is not a part of the process in terms of the application, etc.
To start a step-parent adoption the first thing that needs to be done is to find out the applicable laws in the state of residence. An expert family attorney that handles this kind of work will have that knowledge at their fingertips.
In the alternative, researching online will also answer some of the questions that might arise. “While this might be the route that makes the most sense in terms of finances, some states require the adopting parent have legal representation,” outlined Maggio. A skilled family attorney will also know where to source case law that will assist with the adoption process and help getting the adoption application approved.
Make sure the right court system is accessed to proceed with a step-parent adoption. Depending on the state, this could be probate court, family court or even juvenile court. The court is responsible for handing out the adoption information paperwork. If it happens to be pre-packaged then all the information should be available in the package. If not, the first thing to ask is if legal counsel is required.
Make sure all the proper forms are filled out prior to filing. A skilled family attorney will assist in completing the documentation. In fact this is the smartest thing to do since most of the legal forms are confusing to someone who isn’t an attorney.
“There are many other things that need to be done to finally complete a step-parent adoption and a good family attorney will outline what those steps are in order to make the whole procedure go smoothly,” explained Gerald A. Maggio, of the Maggio Law Firm in Irvine, California.
To learn more about the Maggio Law Firm visit Maggiolawfirm.com.