Adoption Law References
Adoption is the most permanent of the legal relationship options, and creates forever grandfamilies both inside and outside the foster care system. If you will be adopting a child born in a different state, you may need to know about both states’ laws.
The first legal step in adoption is the termination of the parental rights of a child’s birthparents. The final step is the finalization of adoption in court, making you your child’s permanent, legal parents. Along the way, there are many points where adoption laws will have an effect on your child’s adoption.
Termination of Parental Rights
This is a legal process involving a court hearing during which a judge issues a decree that permanently ends all legal parental rights of a birth parent to a child. This must occur before a child is considered to be legally free for adoption. Termination of parental rights can be voluntary or involuntary, that is, with or without the birthparents’ agreement. In some states, there is a period during which the birthparent may appeal, if rights have been terminated without his or her consent. The length of that period varies from state to state.
The National Center for Adoption Law & Policy
The US. National Center for Adoption Law & Policy seeks to improve the law, policies, and practices associated with child protection and adoption systems.
Child Welfare Information Gateway
Promotes the safety, permanency, and well-being of children, youth, and families by connecting child welfare, adoption, and related professionals as well as the public to information, resources, and tools covering topics on child welfare, child abuse and neglect, out-of-home care, adoption, and more.
A service of the Children’s Bureau, Administration for Children and Families, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, we provide access to print and electronic publications, websites, databases, and online learning tools for improving child welfare practice, including resources that can be shared with families.