Bringing Families Together Through Adult And Stepparent Adoption

At Contreras Law Firm, we focus our adoption practice on adult and stepparent adoptions for clients throughout San Diego County and the surrounding area. Our attorneys have a complete understanding of the laws that govern these types of adoptions, and we have helped numerous clients navigate these joyous, though sometimes complex, matters.

Adult Adoptions

California allows one adult to adopt a younger adult to form a parent-child relationship. This legal adoption does more than simply create a relationship. It gives both parties increased rights and responsibilities, including inheritance rights. The biological parents of an adoptee do not have to consent to an adult adoption. During an adult adoption, the parties enter into a written adoption agreement, which must be approved by the court.

Adults often turn to adoption to protect certain estate assets or deal with complicated estate planning issues. A court will often question or inquire into the adult adoption and a brief statement of purpose must be included in documents presented to the court.

Stepparent Adoptions

Stepparent adoptions tend to be more common than adult adoptions. They can be more complex from a legal perspective and require specific approvals before they are allowed to proceed. A stepparent adoption frequently involves the termination of a biological parent's rights. Once this occurs and the stepparent adopts the child, the stepparent has all rights and responsibilities of a biological parent, and the biological parent who lost those rights no longer has a legal relationship with the child. Once stepparent adoption is finalized, it cannot be revoked except in very rare circumstances. This adoption is not terminated if the stepparent and biological parent divorce.

As such, stepparent adoptions should be carefully considered and should not be entered into without the consent of all parties involved, especially the child. To adopt a child through a stepparent adoption, you must be legally married to or in a domestic partnership with the biological parent and at least 10 years older than the child in question (although this can be waived in certain circumstances). Additionally, a child over the age of 12 must consent to the adoption.

Contreras Law Firm | San Diego, California, Family Law Firm

If you are considering an adult adoption or a stepparent adoption, do not hesitate to contact a lawyer at Contreras Law Firm. We will help you draft all of the necessary documents and answer any questions you might have regarding the process or your rights after the adoption is finalized.

Contact our San Diego office today for your initial free consultation.

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