For potential adoptive parents, whether it be searching for a birthmother or moving forward with the adoption of a baby, family member, stepchild or an adult, the process begin with a one on one meeting with an adoption and family formation attorney.
Nanci Worcester’s goal in each adoption is to provide the legal expertise and sensitivity required in a personalized adoption plan. Her vast experience as an adoption attorney ensures that the legal issues surrounding the adoption will be handled legally and promptly, providing peace of mind for the birthparent and the adopting parents.
In recent years, the adoption process has become more complex, as have the legal issues that surround it. For any adoption process to have a positive outcome it is important that the legal rights of all parties be recognized and that all needs are met. It is the role of the adoption attorney to ensure that the adoption is legally secure.
Facilitation is the process of connecting birthmothers and adoptive parents. For adoptive parents, the journey begins with counseling and creating a birth mother brochure that tells your story.
After a screening process, birth parents and hopeful adoptive parents meet to learn more about each other and determine if it is the right “match”. Legal consultation continues pre and post placement, guiding all parties through the pregnancy, birth, and post contact.
An Independent Adoption (may also be referred to as Open or Private Adoption) is when the birth parents and the adoptive parents agree on an adoption plan together. The birth parents can meet the adoptive parents. The biological parent acts as her own agent and places the child directly with the adoptive parents, usually at the hospital after the child is born.
An agency adoption is when parents adopt through a licensed private adoption agency. Birthparents who work with an agency to place their child, must give up their rights as parents to the agency. Then, the agency is legally responsible for the care and custody of the child until the child is adopted.
An Interstate Adoption is when the birth parents and the adoptive parents reside in two different states. The requirements of both states must be met through the Interstate Compact for the Placement of Children (ICPC) before the child may return to the state of the adoptive parents.
A Step parent adoption is when the spouse of a child’s custodial parent adopts that child. Parental rights of the non-custodial parent must be ended by consent or a court action in order to move forward with the adoption. A report is prepared by the local stepparent investigating department before the step parent adoption can be finalized.
An adult adoption is when someone adopts a person over 18 and not related to them. The person adopting must be at least 10 years older than the adult they are adopting. The parties must appear in Court for the finalization.
Termination of Parental Rights in an Adoption
If a non-custodial parent will not sign a consent to the adoption, a legal proceeding must be filed and processed through the Court. This legal process will depend upon the determined legal status of the non-consenting parent.