EstatePlanUtah

Estate Planning, Business Organizations, and Asset Protection

Adoption

Written By: Jeff Skoubye

The adoption process can be daunting for those unfamiliar with the landscape. Our lawyers can assist you in navigating the adoption in any adoption scenario. Please call for a free consultation to discuss your adoption situation. Adoption is the process of changing the legal parent of a child. The process usually involves petitioning the court for approval of the adoption, obtaining consent from all necessary parties, conducting pre and post placement home studies, waiting the required time frame, and finalizing the adoption in open court. There are a number of different types of adoptions that can occur:

Open Adoptions
An open adoption is adoption in which the adoptive parents will know the identity of the birth parents and the birth parents will know the identity of the adoptive parents. When the adoptive parents know one or more of the birth parents such as when grandparents adopted grandchild or siblings adopted nephew or niece. Open adoptions can also occur with unrelated parties when the adoptive parents become aware of an unwanted pregnancy for example. Oftentimes open adoptions raise concerns for the adoptive parents. They will often worry that the birth parents will some point try to meddle in the raising of a child or force a relationship that will be confusing to the child. On the other hand, open adoptions are becoming more popular as individuals learn to cope with the implications of additional parties who care for the child being involved with the child’s life. Even in an open adoption situation the court will usually seal the adoption file at the end of the adoption.

Closed Adoptions
A closed adoption is one in which the adoptive parents in the birth parents do not know one another and will not know one another. These types of adoptions often involve adoption agencies that arrange the adoption on behalf of the birth parents and the adoptive parents. Anonymity is maintained between the parties which allows in most cases for a more normal parent-child relationship between the adoptee and the adoptive parents even in situations where closed adoption occurs, Utah law requires that the birth parents provide information to assist with any potential medical issues that may arise in the future.

Stepparent Adoptions
A stepparent adoption is one in which one of the biological parents has married and wishes their spouse to adopt one or more of their children. In this scenario the biological parent that is married to the adopting parent does not give up their parental rights but maintains) writes while the other biological parents rights are either terminated or relinquished.

Adult Adoptions
In some circumstances and adoption of an adult is desired. This often revolves around a religious wish to have the adult treated as part of one’s family. Adult adoptions tend to be simpler than adoptions of minors since there are fewer requirements.