Adoption Lawyer | Flagler Beach, Florida
Choose the right Florida Lawyer to handle your Adoption Case
Lisa M Dawson P.A. is an experienced family law attorney and has a focus in Florida adoption law. The adoption process can be stressful for any person that is involved but you can be confident in Lisa Dawson’s experience and compassionate guidance throughout the adoption case. She has successfully secured adoption for stepparents, stepchildren and children in the foster care system.
For Adoptive parents.
Who can adopt in the State of Florida?
To adopt one of Florida’s children you may be married or single. There is no one description of a type of person who may be prospective adoptive parents. If you can provide for a child and make a lifelong commitment, you can adopt. A person with certain felony records may not be able to adopt.
Adoption is a serious commitment; it permanently severs ties with the birth parents and relatives and the child belongs to the new family forever. The birth parents are permanently relieved from all responsibilities for the child’s care and financial needs. For the adoptive parents, adoption means providing all care and responsibilities of the child as if the child was naturally born to them.
Any minor present within the state when the petition for adoption is filed may be adopted. Sibling groups may be adopted together.
What are the Adoption procedures?
An adoption establishes a legal parent-child relationship between the adoptee and the adoptive parents. This legal relationship is the same as a legal biological parent- child relationship.
There may be some complications that could develop in some adoptions so it is advised that any those considering adoption be educated on the potential problems that can arise. The biological parents’ rights are primary until that parent voluntarily surrenders those rights or fails to act to protect those rights under Florida law.
4 types of adoptions exist in Florida.
The agency or intermediary facilitated adoption, the stepparent adoption, the close relative adoption and the adult adoption. Each type of adoption has a unique procedure.
The court must receive proof that the biological relationship is terminated. A biological parent can consent for adoption and surrender rights to the child.
Or, a court must hear proof that the parent has abused, abandoned or neglected the child or otherwise failed to protect parental rights under Florida law.
After a court issues a judgement terminating the biological parent-child relationship, the time frame for completing the adoptions can differ. In an entity adoption, the adoptive parents are not eligible to finalize the adoption until 30 days after the placement of the child in the home.
In the stepparent, close relative and adult adoption, the adoptive parents are eligible to immediately finalize the adoption.
In the entity adoption the adoptive parents decide to pursue the adoption through an agency or an attorney acting as the intermediary between the prospective parents and the adoption agency.
The adoption process is complicated, and it is very important to consult an attorney when deciding on any type of adoption. After a child is placed for adoption with an adoptive family, the adoptive family will want to have the adoption finalized.
They must file a petition for adoption with the clerk of court, filed in the county in which the termination of parental rights occurred. File the petition within 60 days of the termination of parental rights judgment. The hearing on the petition may not be held sooner than 30 days after the date of the termination of parental rights judgment or sooner than 90 days after the child is placed with the adoptive family. The 90-day rule doesn’t apply for relative and stepparent adoptions if all required consents are filed with court before the hearing.
The petition for adoption is usually prepared and filed via an attorney. The adoption is finalized at a final hearing. The attorney handling the adoption prepares the necessary papers for the court consideration and presents the necessary testimony and evidence to the court. If all requirements of the statutes and court have been met, the judge shall sign a final judgment of adoption.
What are the effects of the adoption?
The adoptive family permanently assumes all parental rights and responsibilities for the child. The child’s name is changed to whatever the adoptive family desires. A new birth certificate is prepared that shows the adoptive parents as the child’s natural parents. The new parents may apply for a social security number and a passport for their child. The child will be deemed equal with all other children who may then be or later come into the adopted family. The adopted child will inherit equally to those children biologically born into the family for purposes of estates and wills or divorce.
Contact an Adoption Attorney Today
Attorney Lisa M Dawson P.A has experience in all types of adoptions, she can help you and your family with the adoption and ensure that the process is handled in a compassionate and professional manner.
Call her today and discuss your circumstances with Lisa.