How Do I Proceed With Adopting In Arizona?
So, you are thinking of adopting in Arizona? Congratulations! Adding a child to your family is a big step. Growing your family through adoption is an intensive process that culminates with a joyous ending. Adoption is an emotional time, which requires a family law attorney experienced in handling such matters. The goal is to complete the adoption process in a timely manner for a happy conclusion for the parties involved. There are several different kinds of adoption processes. Family lawyers are familiar with handling each kind of adoption in Arizona.
Regardless of which approach you will be taking to adopt, there is a legal process that must be followed in order for the legal adoption to be finalized. Here are the four kinds of adopting in Arizona:
- Private Adoptions – If you have found a baby to adopt, you need an attorney to help negotiate the adoption agreements with the birth mother to cover any living or medical expenses. An attorney would also be needed to coordinate with any adoption agency that is involved so the paperwork can be facilitated.
- Department of Child Safety (DCS) Adoptions – Children who are in the care of the Department of Child Safety often become available for adoption for different reasons. Sometimes, these children are placed in foster care then adopted by foster parents. For a smooth transition and to ensure the legal adoption process goes smoothly, you need to consult with an Arizona family law attorney.
- Step-Parent Adoptions – When a step-parent enters the picture, they often take on a parental role. Sometimes they want to go a step farther and legally adopt their step-children. These adoptions might involve the voluntary or involuntary termination of the biological parent’s parental rights. An attorney can help with each step of the formal adoption process, including the termination of parental rights.
- Adoptions by Grandparents or Other Relatives – Unfortunately, children are sometimes orphaned, removed from the care of their biological parents, or abandoned. Family members want to keep these children in the family quite often. In those situations, a relative might opt to adopt the child. Relative or grandparent adoptions are common, but they also require the guidance of family law attorney who can proceed with the proper paperwork and necessary steps to finalize the process.
How Does The Arizona Adoption Process Work?
With the help of an Arizona family law attorney, your rights are protected and you can ensure that the adoption process is handled legally and accurately. The adoption process involves the drafting and review of documents and a home study by a qualified social worker. Sometimes an absent parent must be tracked down to sign over parental rights or to give their consent and agree to you adopting the child in question. Even an uncontested adoption can be complicated and involves extensive documentation.
Every step of the Arizona adoption process requires legal guidance from a family law attorney. The attorney general’s office on the county or state level can help facilitate an adoption, but because of the log of work they perform, the offices can be very slow in facilitating such matters. Sometimes they aren’t even responsive because of the backlog of work and the number of cases they handle on a daily basis. When you enlist the help of your own attorney, you can generally expect the process to move much more smoothly and quickly. Problems can arise even during uncontested adoptions, so make sure your rights and the rights of the children are properly protected. Welcoming a child into your family should be a joyous occasion, and your attorney can help make the transition go smoothly.