Stepparent Adoption Attorney

At Klein Law Group, our attorneys in Boca Raton, West Palm Beach and Fort Lauderdale can help stepparents in Florida that are interested in adopting their spouses’ children.   Stepparent adoption can be a complicated and lengthy process, and one that is fraught with emotion.  Therefore, it is important to utilize an attorney you can trust to provide you with the legal guidance and representation you need to successfully get through what is one of the most important events in your life.

Stepparent adoption allows for the legal adoption by a stepparent of a spouse’s child or children.  In the state of Florida, stepparent adoptions require written consent by the natural parent, with the exception of cases in which the natural parent has abandoned the child, does not provide financial or physical support, is deceased, or the natural parent’s whereabouts are unknown.  In some cases, even if a natural parent can be located, a court can allow for the adoption of the child by a stepparent if the natural parent is deemed to be incompetent, with no expectation of the parent regaining competency.  There are other extenuating circumstances that may be considered in the process of a stepparent adoption.

Stepparent Adoption Attorneys in Boca Raton, West Palm Beach and Fort Lauderdale
Adopting a stepchild can be one of the most important decisions an individual makes in his or her life, and an experienced and knowledgeable lawyer can ensure that the process goes smoothly.  At Klein Law Group, we have been providing compassionate yet tenacious legal guidance and representation in cases of adoption in the state of Florida for over ten years.

Contact Our Boca Raton Stepparent Adoption Lawyers Today!

If you are considering adoption and would like to discuss the specifics of your case, we offer free consultations, providing the opportunity to get your questions answered.  Call the South Florida attorneys at Klein Law Group today at 561-367-5166 for trusted stepparent adoption representation.  If you prefer, you can fill out the form on the side of this page and one of our experienced lawyers will call you back.

Florida Stepparent Adoption FAQs

An uncontested stepparent adoption is one in which the absent natural parent does not object to the adoption. This can occur because the natural parent believes th adoption is in the child’s best interest and has signed a consent, the natural parent has no relationship with the child or has failed to provide financial support (has abandoned the child), the natural parent is deceased of the parent’s whereabouts are unknown. If the natural parent is involved in the child’s life and does not want to contest the adoption, he or she must file a written consent that allows for the adoption to go forward.
In the state of Florida, a stepparent adoption will not be approved by the court if the natural parent has maintained regular contact with the child and has kept up with all required child support, unless the natural parent has consented in writing to the adoption.  There are some extenuating circumstances that can be taken into consideration by a court in cases of contested adoptions, but it is difficult to override the rights of the natural parent.
You will be required to file a Petition for Adoption and submit it to the Circuit Court in the county in which you reside. If the natural parent files a consent form, this makes the process easier, since the court knows that the natural parent approves of the adoption. Otherwise, it will be up to the stepparent to provide legal proof that the natural parent is deceased, has deserted the child, has been declared legally incompetent or the parent’s whereabouts are unknown. If a child is age twelve or older, the court must also interview the child to obtain his or her permission for the adoption. Once the documents are filed, a hearing date will be set to finalize the adoption.

If the adoption is approved by the court, the child will receive a new birth certificate with the child’s new name on it and the adopted parents name on it as well. All rights and responsibilities of the natural parent will be terminated at the time the stepparent adoption is finalized and the stepparent will have the same rights and responsibilities as a natural parent.

Stepparents must be residents of the state of Florida for at least six months prior to filing for adoption. If the natural, absent parent is alive and has maintained regular contact and financial support for the child, the stepparent must have written consent for the adoption or it will typically not be approved. Consent is not required, however, if the natural parent has been declared incompetent, with no expectation that he or she will regain competency, or if it can be legally proven that the natural parent has deserted the child or is nowhere to be found.
If an unmarried biological father has not registered paternity of the child with the state of Florida’s Putative Father Registry, the stepparent is not required to obtain permission from him in order to proceed with the adoption. If, however, the unmarried biological father has acknowledged in writing that he is the father of the child and has filed the written acknowledgement with the Office of Vital Statistics of the Department of Health, he may be able to contest the adoption by the stepparent.
If a couple gets divorced at some point after a stepparent has adopted his or her spouse’s child or children, the stepparent has the same ongoing legal and financial responsibilities to the child as if he or she were the natural parent.
We offer legal services in Boca Raton, West Palm Beach, Delray Beach, Boynton Beach, Fort Lauderdale, and surrounding areas.