Attorneys involved in family law handle a variety of legal matters, including adoption. Typically, lawyers who handle adoption cases tend to focus their practices on legal matters regarding adoption due to the nuances associated with these family law cases. Individuals looking to adopt can benefit from the guidance of a lawyer throughout the process, including attending court appearances and finding an agency.
Starting the Adoption Process
Texas adoption lawyers can offer significant help in the beginning stages of the adoption process. After hiring an adoption lawyer, he or she will help you choose a method of adoption, by either assisting in finding an adoption agency or by pursuing an independent adoption. With either option, an experienced family law lawyer will walk you or a loved one through the necessary paperwork, as well as prepare and file all paperwork needed for a successful process.
Depending on your case, you may be required to appear before a court. An adoption attorney can make these necessary court appearances on your behalf. For those entering into the adoption process, an attorney can help guarantee both the prospective legal guardian and the child’s rights and interests are accounted for.
In addition to paperwork and mandated court appearances, adoption attorneys can also assist in any legal screening necessary for matching or finalizing an adoption, as well as any specific requirements for adopting within the state of Texas.
Texas Adoption Requirements
Texas adoption laws have specific requirements that must be met in order for an adoption to becomes finalized. This process can involve complex legal issues best left to experienced attorneys. Some of the most common questions associated with Texas adoption are:
In Texas, any legal adult (above the age of 18) may adopt. There is no age minimum or limit for adoption. Additionally, while the law states any legal adult is eligible for adoption, there may be age requirements for an independent adoption.
A person does not need to be married to be eligible to adopt in Texas. If a person is married, however, they may not adopt a child without their spouse. This rule also applies to individuals who are separated but have not yet finalized their divorce, as well as spouses wishing to adopt their stepchildren.
Texas does not discriminate against LGBTQ individuals seeking to adopt, and there are currently no laws prohibiting a same-sex couple from adopting in Texas.
In Texas, prospective parents must submit to a home study conducted by a social worker, which is an assessment of the child’s potential living environment. Home studies typically include but are not limited to:
- Criminal background checks
- Visits to the home
- Interviews with prospect parent(s)
Texas Adoption Lawyers
An adoption lawyer is essential to navigating the legal ins and outs of a sound adoption. At Terry & Roberts, we handle family law matters almost exclusively, and we are adept at keeping the best interests of children in mind while navigating complex legal proceedings. Contact Terry & Roberts today to schedule a confidential consultation with a seasoned, knowledgeable Texas adoption lawyer.