When it comes to obtaining the appropriate legal services for adoption in Colorado Springs, Pueblo, and Castle Rock area, be sure to hire a team of attorneys with ample experience to get the adoption process done right and as swift as possible. Read the information below to learn how our Colorado Springs family lawyers can help you at Maceau Law:
Adoption is the legal process of a person or couple assuming the parental responsibilities of another person’s child. It permanently transfers filiation, responsibilities and rights pertaining to the child from the biological parent to the adoptive parent.
Types of adoptions:
The first two types of adoption make up the two distinct categories in which all adoptions fall. The second group relays information about closed and open adoptions. The third group explains the difference between agency, independent and public. The fourth category describes what adult adoption is and why it is sought.
This type refers to the adoption of a child from outside the boundaries of America. It is usually facilitated by an agency or a private attorney. It typically costs from $7,000 to $35,000 and takes from 15 to 24 months to process.
This type occurs within the boundaries of the United States or its territories. The categories listed below include the types of domestic adoptions that take place on a regular basis:
- Closed: A closed adoption signifies that no identifying information about the birth family or child is given to the family seeking the adoption. Once the adoptive parents sign the paperwork and the child is placed, the records become sealed. In many states, the adopted child cannot access their adoption records until they reach 18 years of age.
- Open: An adoption that is open permits contact between the birth family and the adoptive parents. This contact can vary from sharing pictures and letters to phone calls and actual physical contact between the adoptive family and the child’s birth family. In cases where the adopted child is older or in their teens, open adoption is often implemented to allow them to remain in contact with their birth family.
- Agency: Agency adoptions are facilitated by a local public agency such as social services, child welfare or foster care. They also include adoptions through licensed private agencies. In most agency adoption cases, the birth parents transfer custody of the child to an agency, and the agency then transfers custody to the adoptive parents. The cost of this type of adoption typically runs from $8,000 to $30,000 and can take from one to two years to finalize.
- Independent: This type of adoption means that the adoptive parents have located the birth family and are facilitating the adoption themselves through the help of an attorney. In some cases, agencies will still assist in this process. However, in an independent adoption, the child is not in the custody of the state or any agency. The cost of this type of adoption runs from $4,000 to $30,000 and takes from one to two years to process.
- Public: A public adoption occurs when a child is removed from their birth parent’s care due to neglect, abuse or dependency issues. The child is then placed in the custody of the state. This type of adoption typically takes from a few months to a few years to finalize and costs under $2,500.
- Adult: Although not available in every state, adult adoption is the adoption of a person who is an adult. This often occurs when foster kids outgrow the foster system and are adopted by their foster family. It can also include a step-parent adopting the adult child of their spouse. In other cases, it is to orchestrate the permanent care-giving of an adult.
How important are lawyers and judges when it comes to adoption?
A judge’s role in the process of adoption is to alter a child’s legal status. A family court judge will terminate the parental rights of the birth parents and issue a decree. In many cases, a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) will speak on the behalf of the child in court. The purpose of a CASA is to the provide the judge information regarding the best placement of the child. They also research any neglect or abuse allegations involving the child.
In general, acquiring an attorney is crucial to assuring the process of adoption goes as planned. The American Academy of Adoption Attorneys is a distinguished group of attorneys that specialize in this type of law. Anyone seeking a great attorney should choose one that is part of this group.
The court’s responsibilities when it comes to adoption are as follows:
- Finalizing a child’s adoption.
- Changing reunification with a birth family to adoption when in the best interest of the child.
- Setting a goal for the child’s future and reviewing it periodically.
- Termination of the birth parents’ parental rights.
- Periodic review of the child’s case.
Adoption agencies are licensed by the state in which they are located. In some cases, larger agencies are licensed in more than one state. Each state in America has a department that deals with adoption. They are often housed within the state’s human or social services. In many cases, these state services aid in the permanent placement of children who are in foster care. This type of adoption is often referred to as a fost-adopt adoption.
When orchestrating an adoption, a collaboration of attorneys, judges and agencies occurs to ensure the best placement for a child. The child’s well-being is always of paramount importance when processing an adoption.
When you need legal help for an adoption in Colorado Springs
If you think you might need help with a situation involving adoption in Colorado Springs, Pueblo, or Castle Rock areas, you can contact one of our experienced family lawyers at Maceau Law to schedule a free consultation. Call 719-633-2222 to schedule a consultation now.