On behalf of The Rachel Firm posted in Adoption on Wednesday, September 3, 2014.
Adopting a child can be one of the most profoundly satisfying events in a person’s life. In Texas, there are plenty of children in need of stable homes. Parents who are looking to adopt may be intimidated by the complex legal process required. With the assistance of an experienced attorney, however, the adoption process can go very smoothly.
Texas allows just about any adult to be an adoptive parent. If the child is age 12 or older, the child’s consent will be necessary for the adoption. If the person seeking to adopt is married, the other spouse must join in the petition – except, of course, in the case of a step-parent adoption where the other spouse is already the parent of the child.
Single or unmarried people are allowed to adopt in Texas. Same-sex couples, however, may face some obstacles. Because Texas still bans same-sex marriage, however, some judges may take the position that same-sex couples cannot adopt a child. Same-sex couples who wish to adopt a child would be wise to work with an attorney who is knowledgeable about this issue.
The child must live in the adoptive parents’ home for six months before the adoption will be finalized by the court. This requirement may be waived, however, if justified by the circumstances of the particular case. After the adoption, anyone challenging the adoption has six months to do so, after which the challenge will be barred.
There is a great deal of legal paperwork required before an adoption will be finalized. The prospective parents must go through criminal background checks and studies social service professionals. The final steps are a hearing to approve the adoption and the issuance of a new birth certificate showing the adoptive parents as the legal parents of the child.
Source: Findlaw, “Texas Adoption Laws,” accessed Aug. 31, 2014