Adopting a child can be one of the brightest moments in a family’s life. Adoptions can help children who need the support of a loving family and they can help families who might otherwise be unable to have a child. In many cases, adoption is used to bring blended families together or to give a stepparent the legal rights needed to be a parent to a stepchild.
No matter your situation, there can be complications in any adoption case that make it harder to complete the adoption and form the familial bond you want. The Houston adoption attorneys at The Queenan Law Firm help parents seeking adoption throughout the Houston area. For a confidential legal consultation on your adoption case, call our attorneys today at (817) 476-1797.
Types of Adoption in Houston, TX
When you want to adopt a child, there are different systems in place and legal issues that are likely to arise based on what kind of adoption you are pursuing. Some adoptions are easier than others, and many adoptions have unique issues that are difficult to overcome without the help of an experienced adoption attorney. Our attorneys help with all of the following types of adoption cases.
Adopting a child from an adoption agency in Texas is often complex and takes time to finalize the adoption, but it is a comparatively smooth process in many cases. This kind of adoption is one of the most standard forms of adoption, with thousands of parents adopting this way every year.
When you work with an agency, the agency will be the one to transfer parental rights to you at the end of the case. However, different agencies have different standards, and you must also meet state standards to have an adoption approved. The state-required processes often involve background checks and home studies, but, depending on the specific agency, there might be rounds of interviews and other checks. If you are adopting from a religious agency, they might even want to check paperwork to see that you are a member of the church and will raise the adopted child in the faith.
Adopting a child from an agency in a different state is often more complex. Usually, you will still need to meet Texas’ standards for adoption, but the other state might also have strict adoption standards. Our attorneys can help you navigate the process and advise you on whether you might need an attorney in the other state as well to complete your adoption case more smoothly.
International adoption cases are often the most expensive and time-consuming types of adoption cases. Depending on the rules of the country you are adopting from, you might have to wait a long time to match with a child. Some countries even require that prospective parents come to their country, learn about the culture, and be physically present in the country when they apply or go through the selection process for adoption. In some cases, the parents might have to make multiple trips to affect the adoption.
Adopting from other countries is becoming more and more popular, and many countries have adapted their processes to help ease the process for parents in the U.S. Still, legal issues can arise both abroad and back home in Texas that might benefit from the help of an experienced adoption attorney.
Many foster parents form family bonds with the children in their care and want to adopt them later. Especially if the child you are fostering is a family member, such as a cousin or a niece/nephew, you might be a perfect fit to adopt the child. In many cases, this means severing any remaining parental relationship that the child might have with their birth parents so that you can step in and adopt.
Many foster parents already meet the necessary qualifications to adopt, so the qualifications process can often work faster than in other adoption cases. However, legal challenges from the birth parents might make it harder to adopt a foster child if the parents want to keep custody. Talk to a lawyer for help with this process.
In blended families, parents often want to solidify their parental relationship by adopting their spouse’s children. If the children’s other parent is deceased, this can often move very quickly and easily. A court simply needs to approve the parent for adoption and go through any other processes, but since there is no second parent who shares custody, the stepparent can often step into that parental role without objection.
Cases can be more complex if the child’s other parent still has custody. Since a child can only have two legal parents, the birth parent would have to lose custody for a stepparent to take over legal custody. If this does not happen, then the stepparent might have a child living in their house that they do not have legal custody over and cannot make legal decisions for. Talk to a Houston family law attorney about how to negotiate these kinds of adoptions with the other parent and process the adoption with the help of a Houston adoption attorney.
Call Our Adoption Lawyers in Houston for Help with Your Case
If you are trying to adopt a child, The Queenan Law Firm can help. Our Houston adoption lawyers represent prospective parents and work to help them finalize the adoption they want. We can work with agencies and investigators to help give them the information they need to approve the adoption, and we can work to negotiate any legal issues between agencies, birth parents, and other parties. For a legal consultation on your case, call our Arlington TX family law attorneys today at (817) 476-1797.