Fort Worth Adoption Attorneys
The Maynard Law Firm, PLLC is here to help families like yours navigate the complicated legal process of adoption. Our Fort Worth adoption attorneys have the experience and knowledge you need on your side. We know how much is at stake, and we will work hard to make sure the adoption process is as smooth as possible. Call us today at (817) 335-9600 to discuss your legal options and to schedule a free consultation with an experienced Fort Worth adoption lawyer at The Maynard Law Firm, PLLC.
Completing the Adoption Process with an Attorney
Though state and private adoption agencies make a great effort to help parents transition into the adoption process, it still can be complicated and highly confusing for people without the aid of an attorney. A knowledgeable adoption lawyer will help you through each step of the legal process, including understanding all the applicable rules for adoption, filing the necessary paperwork, and explaining the estimated timeline. A lawyer can also help you prepare for any hearings, home visits, interviews, and other requirements you need to fulfill.
Why Choose The Maynard Law Firm, PLLC to Help You?
If you would like to learn more about how an attorney will be able to help you through the legal process, reach out to a Fort Worth adoption attorney at The Maynard Law Firm, PLLC to discuss your situation and any questions you may have. Our attorneys will be more than happy to help you carefully work through each essential stage of your adoption.
At The Maynard Law Firm, PLLC, our mission is to help Fort Worth families. We offer free consultations to families looking to discuss their options with a lawyer before diving into the complicated legal process of adoption. At The Maynard Law Firm, PLLC, we understand the great importance of ensuring that your adoption is completed correctly and as efficiently as possible.
Types of Adoption
Not all adoptions are the same, and it is pertinent for a potential parent to understand the various types of adoption available under Texas law. These types of adoptions include:
- Private Adoptions: Adoptions between the biological parent or family and the family adopting the child. Private adoptions include the subcategories of open and closed adoptions.
- International Adoptions: The adoption of a child outside of the United States. It may be no surprise that this type of adoption is quite complicated. The child to be adopted will require an immigration visa before arriving in the United States and being granted citizenship. The international adoption process is more rigorous in order to prevent child abduction and trafficking in the world. As such, the help of an experienced attorney is essential in the pursuit of international adoption.
- Child Protective Services (CPS) Adoptions: Takes place after CPS has successfully asked a court to determine that it is against the best interests of a child to remain with their birth family, or if both biological parents have voluntarily surrendered their parental rights. If your family is ready to adopt such a child, the child will stay in your home for a six month period before the adoption can become final. After a judge approves a “petition to adopt,” both CPS and the Department of Family and Protective Services will no longer be involved with your child.
- Stepchild Adoptions: Occurs when a biological parent’s spouse wishes to adopt their stepchild. One of the primary steps to this type of adoption is to terminate any parental rights of anyone other than you and your spouse. The married couple will petition a court together for the stepparent to legally become a parent. The child must live with their stepparent for a minimum of six months before the adoption can be finalized. If your child is twelve years of age or older, they may also be required to express their consent to the adoption in writing or in court.
- Infant Adoption: Adopting an infant in the state of Texas requires parents to follow specific steps and meet basic qualifications. Our attorneys can help you with all of the requirements to ensure that your adoption goes smoothly.
What Should I Expect in Adoption Proceedings?
Determining who should be the parents of a child is a serious decision that requires extensive information on the people wishing to adopt the child. For this reason, adoption cases include a series of studies and reports that commonly involve:
- In-person interviews with the adoptive parent(s) and the child
- Home visits to assess the environment the child will potentially live in
- Observing the child in various environments
- Review of the relationship between the child and the possible parents
- Background checks, including criminal history, for anyone living in the potential future home of the child
- Health reports, educational records, and genetic history information on the child
Though exciting, this process can be daunting to a potential parent with minimal legal experience. It is in your best interest to hire an experienced adoption attorney such as those at The Maynard Law Firm, PLLC to help you navigate these proceedings.
Frequently Asked Questions
Adoption is a complex and highly emotional process. We understand that you likely have many questions about it, and we’re here to help. Read on to see the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions, or call us today at (817) 335-9600 for answers to any specific questions you may have about your case.
What do I do if I want to adopt but can’t afford it?
Adoption through different means can have different financial implications. Adopting a child from a state agency would not cost as much, for example, as adopting a child internationally. Still, it’s important to remember that adoption is always going to be a large financial commitment because you’re signing on to raise a child. You do not have to be wealthy to adopt, but you do need to be in a good place, financially.
If you are looking to adopt but you’re facing uncertainty with your finances, you can always look into the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services’ adoption assistance program. This especially applies when adopting a child who is considered “special needs,” which means that the child falls into at least one of four categories: 1) they are joining a sibling being adopted, 2) they’re at least six years old, 3) they are mentally, emotionally, or physically disabled, or 4) they are of an ethnic group that is less frequently adopted from foster care than other ethnic groups. Many children fall into one of these categories, and if you are considering adoption, it can be beneficial to consider the financial help provided through the adoption assistance program.
Who is eligible to adopt?
You do not have to be a married homeowner to be eligible to adopt a child. In fact, anyone over 21 could be an adoptive parent as long as they pass the training, background check, and home study. Divorced, widowed, or single people should not be dissuaded from choosing to adopt as long as they are ready to provide a loving and safe environment for a child. Additionally, couples who both work are not disqualified from adopting, and neither are couples who already have children of their own. There are many kinds of families looking to adopt.
What is the best way to adopt?
Even though there are many pathways to go down when adopting a child, no one route is better than the other when they all end in a child joining a loving family. Each person is different, and you may find that adoption through state agencies or foster care is the best way for you to integrate a child into your home. While there are many infants who need homes, it is also important to remember older children who have yet to be adopted. Many of these children are in foster care and need homes just as badly as the younger ones. Providing a forever home for a child is no small feat, and no quick decision. To make the best decision for your family, it may be beneficial to discuss different adoption opportunities with a lawyer who is experienced with family law and adoption.
Consult with an Adoption Attorney in Fort Worth Metroplex
To speak with a Fort Worth adoption attorney at The Maynard Law Firm, PLLC about your circumstances, please call (817) 335-9600 today to schedule a free initial consultation or contact our office. The entire legal team at The Maynard Law Firm, PLLC is eager to serve you in providing understanding legal assistance at such a pivotal time in your child’s life.