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Basics of Adoption: Birthparent Rights

Basics of Adoption: Birthparent Rights

If you are a birthparent and you are considering adoption for your child, it will probably not be easy to come to a final decision. There’s no way for anyone else to know exactly what is right for you and your child or to make the decision for you. What can be useful is information. If you are considering adoption as a birth parent, you should know exactly what your legal rights are when it comes to the adoption process. The more informed your decision is regarding adoption, the more comfortable and peaceful the entire process will be for you, the child, and the adoptive parents you’ll be working with.

A Quick Rundown of Birthparent Rights in Adoption:

  1. No birthparent should be coerced into choosing adoption for their child. You have the legal right to NOT be coerced.
  2. Birthparents have a legal right to written information about alternatives to adoption, different types of adoption, current adoption issues, practices and laws.
  3. Birthparents have the right to participate in the creation of service plans/adoption plans designed to meet the needs of those involved in the adoption. You also have the right to receive a copy of the plan.
  4. You have the right to receive a copy of any paperwork you are asked to sign during the adoption process.
  5. You have the right to legal representation of your own during the adoption process.

Any birthparent considering adoption should seek information about the process, the alternatives, and how each will affect them and/or the child in the future. Adoption, in and of itself, has many variations according to the modern legal framework governing the process. Some will suggest that before you consider information specific to adoption (i.e. open vs. closed, adoption plan possibilities, etc.) that you must decide whether or not adoption is right for you. In some cases, this may be the simplest way to go about the process of making the decision. But for others, it can be very useful to seek information about adoption immediately.

It may be easier to make the decision when the possibilities available through adoption are all on the table. In the past, a majority of adoptions were closed. This meant that birth parents had no contact with the adoptive family and extremely minimal involvement in the process of the adoption itself. While birth parents can still request this type of adoption, most adoptions today are what is referred to as “open adoptions.” The open adoption allows contact between the child, adoptive families and birth parents. The form and frequency of contact vary greatly. It is determined by the birth parents and the adoptive parents at the time of the adoption. This drastically increases the realm of possibility for birth parents considering adoption and is therefore applicable in the very early stages of the decision making process.

If you have questions or concerns or simply need someone educated in the Arizona adoption process to discuss your options with please get in touch with Arizona Family Law Attorneys. We can answer your questions and address your concerns so you have what you need to make an informed decision about your child’s future.
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