If you recently got married and your new spouse has children whom you would like to adopt, you must have the consent of not only your spouse, but the child’s other parent, unless the other parent abandoned the child. Why is consent so critical in these types of cases? Well, if the other parent consents to the adoption, he or she is essentially giving up all rights and responsibilities. This means you and your spouse will no longer be obligated to allow him or her to visit the children or partake in any decision-making regarding their upbringing. However, it also means that parent will no longer have to make child support payments. It is a heavy decision that all parties must consider very carefully.
Stepparent Adoption in Massachusetts
The actual process of adopting one’s stepchild is actually relatively simple, barring any issues regarding parental consent. Some of the benefits your children will enjoy upon completion include:
- If desired, a new name can be established
- New birth certificate
- Two legal parents that are active in their lives
- The ability to inherit from the adoptive parent
If the other parent does not consent to the adoption, there are other grounds for the termination of parental rights, which include:
- Lack of financial support
- Sustained lack of contact
- Abuse or neglect
- The putative or presumptive father is not the biological father
Additionally, in Massachusetts, if a child is above the age of 12, he or she will be required to sign a consent to the adoption.
Framingham Family Law Attorneys
If you are looking into adopting your new spouse’s children, the Framingham family law attorneys at Barach Law Group LLC offer personalized legal assistance to help families navigate the process. With over 20 years of experience under our belts, we understand what it takes to meet the needs of our clients and are committed to providing personalized solutions. Get started on your case today and call us at 617-819-1805 to schedule a free consultation.