Most who consider
stepparent adoption wish for legal security to combat the lack of a biological connection
to a spouse’s child. In many instances, this can be an excellent
choice for both the parent, stepparent and child. Why should you
adopt your stepchild? The most obvious and important answer is so that if the time comes when
it is needed, you will already have legal decision making for your spouse’s child.
If you aren’t sure if you need to adopt your stepchild, you can start
by pondering the actual process of adoption. Many feel that it could be
an unnecessary move when they already play the parental role in the child’s
life. The simplest way to put it is this: stepparent adoption (or adopting
your stepchild) will mean that the role you already play in the child’s
life will be recognized in the eyes of the law.
Stepchild Adoption is Important & Offers Many Benefits to the Entire Family:
Financial: Obtaining legal custody of your stepchild will entitle the child
to your inheritance. It will also allow the child to receive insurance benefits.
Permanence: Stepparent adoption, from the emotional perspective, will provide
a sense of finality to the situation. The legal adoption of your stepchild
often adds stability to the entire family. This is particularly true for
the child who is adopted.
Parental Recognition: There are many seemingly menial, every day tasks
such as doctor’s appointments, prescription pickups, obtaining medical
records, picking children up from school, etc. that are made substantially
easier when a stepparent is the actual legal parent of the child.
The legal process of a stepparent adopting their spouse’s child is
similar to any other adoption. There will be a required background check.
Birth parent consent will need to be obtained and the process will end
with legal finalization. With a stepparent adoption, many of the steps
involved in a traditional adoption can be shortened or possibly even waived
completely. For instance, you may not require a home study or the home
study conducted could be far less intense than what would normally be required.
If you are unsure of what is involved to adopt your stepchild, please
get in touch with one of the experienced Arizona adoption attorneys at
Arizona Family Law Attorneys today. We can assist you as you seek the benefits of stepparent adoption
for your family.