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Complications are possible during the stepparent adoption process

During a traditional adoption a birth mother and birth father agree to relinquish their legal rights to their child so that another person or couple is able to create a legal relationship with the youth and raise the child as a member of their family. For this type of adoption to occur, many legal steps must be followed to ensure that everyone's rights have been protected. The process can be quite lengthy. Some Northern Virginia families engage in a very different type of adoption process that often requires fewer steps, but can be subject to complications just the same.

This type of adoption is stepparent adoption. It occurs when the spouse of a birth parent wishes to adopt the spouse's kids so that they are also a legal parent to the children. While stepparents can play important roles in the lives of their stepchildren, they are not technically parents to them and lack the legal rights to make important decisions about their upbringing and care.

One similarity between traditional adoptions and stepparent adoptions is the requirement that the children's birth parents agree to the process. It is very likely that the stepparent who wishes to pursue the adoption will have the support of their spouse; challenges can arise when they seek to secure a release of parental rights from the children's other birth parent or parents. Not every parent wishes to lose their rights to the custody and care of their kids and this part of the process can be very difficult.

If a child's non-custodial biological parent is deceased or has otherwise had their parental rights terminated by a court of law, then it is not necessary for the stepparent to secure such a release of rights. Other issues must be addressed before a stepparent may adopt the spouse's kids and readers of this blog may wish to discuss their concerns with their family law attorneys.

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