At Orner Law, LLC, our experienced family law attorneys are dedicated to helping families throughout South Florida with their adoption needs. We offer our clients a supportive environment where they can seek the professional legal counsel they need to manage their adoption. Adopting a child is one of the most selfless actions that an individual or family may take. It is also often complex and is a legal matter, and that is why it is best to involve an attorney.
An experienced South Florida adoption lawyer can talk to you about your goals and can guide you through this process properly and efficiently. You may be interested in adopting your spouse’s child, or you and your spouse/partner are looking to adopt a child who needs a loving home. By undergoing an initial consultation with an attorney at Orner Law, LLC, you can learn more about your legal rights and your options in this regard.
About Adoption in Florida
Adoption is a legal process that results in the transfer from one or both of the birth parents to the adopting adults of most rights and responsibilities concerning their biological son or daughter’s welfare and upbringing. In essence, the adopted child becomes a legal member of a new family, just as though he or she had been born to the adoptive parents. It is a legal process that involves the adoptive parents taking over the legal custody of the child. In most cases, the biological parents’ custody of and all rights to participate in the upbringing of the child are terminated and the adoptive parents’ rights are recognized. In stepparent adoptions, however, the biological parent retains parenting rights and the adoptive parent’s rights are acknowledged in addition. After a successful adoption, the new parent or parents would have full legal guardianship of the child.
With just a few exceptions, once an adoption becomes final, the adopted child’s legal relationship to his or her birth parent ends. Whether the birth parents may have any future contact with the child depends both on the birth parents’ and adoptive parents’ wishes and the facts in each case. In appropriate situations, so-called “open” adoptions, in which one or both birth parents may keep the right to communicate with their child, is possible in Florida. Also, if a birth parent owed unpaid child support as of the date of the adoption, the adoption does not affect his or her legal duty to pay.
Who Can Adopt?
There are many misconceptions concerning who has the legal right to adopt in Florida. Any adult who is determined by the court to have good moral character and the physical and emotional ability to nurture a child may adopt. While the adoptive parent or parents must have the financial ability to support the child, many persons of relatively modest means have become successful adoptive parents. Single adults and married couples may adopt, and a stepparent may adopt the wife or husband’s children from the prior marriage. Age generally is not a bar to adoption, provided the adoptive parent has the physical and cognitive ability
Although a number of states allow single gay men and women and same-sex couples to adopt, current Florida law on this point is unclear. Although a statute expressly prohibits a homosexual from becoming an adoptive parent, in 2010 the law was found by a state appeals court to be an unconstitutional denial of equal protection.
Consult an Adoption Attorney Today
Our firm assists families with all types of adoptions in Florida, including: stepparent adoption, domestic adoption, relative adoption, special-needs adoption, international adoption, and more. We use our experience and our extensive resources in this field to help address our clients’ unique needs.
With offices in Boca Raton and Fort Lauderdale, Orner Law, LLC serves clients throughout South Florida.
For your initial case evaluation, please contact a South Florida adoption attorney at Orner Law, LLC today by calling (561) 347-1336.