Orlando Adoption Attorneys
When a parent remarries, whether after the death of a former spouse or after a divorce or separation, the new spouse may desire to formally adopt the child or children of their current spouse. A step-parent may choose to formally adopt a spouse’s child from a prior relationship, but the natural parent must receive notice of the adoption proceeding (unless deceased), and must consent to the adoption or else must be determined “unfit” before a step-parent adoption will be finalized. A similar protocol applies when a child is born outside the marriage and the birth parent later remarries, and the stepparent wants to adopt the child.
According to Florida Adoption Law:
A stepparent may adopt without his spouse joining in the adoption, as long as the spouse consents to the adoption. A married person may adopt without the other spouse if the spouse’s failure to consent is excused by the court. No person can be prohibited from adopting, solely because he or she is handicapped, unless the Department of Children and Families determines that the handicap makes him or her incapable of being an effective parent. Florida law does not indicate an age limit to adopting, it indicates an “adult” is allowed to adopt.
For all legal intents and purposes, the child will be considered the natural child of the adoptive parent. Further, the adopted child will stand on an equal footing with all other children that may then be, or later be, conceived to the adoptive parent, regardless of whether the other children are biologically born or adopted to the adoptive parent. This is true with respect to wills and estates, or later, if the adoptive parent and biological parent divorce. Thus, except for the biological realities, it is as though the child was born to the adoptive parent initially.
Znosko & Reas can help you gather all of the necessary documentation to initiate your Step-parent Adoption, providing guidance and assistance to you throughout the State of Florida. A free initial consultation and flexible appointment times are available for your convenience. Simply click on the contact link to obtain more information on scheduling your consultation today.
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