If you are a stepparent you know the unique situation you may find yourself.  By providing emotional support and helping to provide a stable and safe environment.  There is no doubt about it, a responsible and loving stepparent can help fill a large void after a divorce, the death of a parent or if one parent is unfortunately not stable enough for children.

As life moves forward it may seem like the right time to officially adopt your stepchildren.  This decision can be an absolutely right choice for certain families in certain situations.  Below is a look at some of the items you should consider to determine if this is the right choice for you.

Evaluating your relationships and family situation

There are several factors that only you and your significant other can truly understand.  One main area of concern is if your relationship with the children is strong enough to support this decision.  You may find it highly valuable to consider the reasons you are seeking adoption, and what you are wishing to gain.

Another great question to ask is how this will affect family dynamics and everyday life once the adoption has gone through.  One last, and perhaps the touchiest issue is getting permission for the ex-spouse if necessary.  In order to get full parental rights, you will need to have signed consent from the other parent or a full waiver of their legal rights to the child.

Benefits of adopting your stepchildren

All the legal benefits of adoption can be summed up by simply saying that you will have the same legal rights as a biological parent.  This will allow you to have a much more enforceable say in the child’s future, medical choices, schooling, where they live and so forth.

Full adoption can also make an uncertain future clearer.  For example, should the unthinkable happen and your spouse, one of the biological parents should pass away.  If you have their adoption all in order then custody should be granted to you.  If not there is a chance that the children would be taken back to the ex-spouse or their grandparents.

Hire an attorney to draft your adoption papers

Should you make the decision that adoption is right for you, we highly suggest hiring an attorney.  When you work with an experienced family law firm they can help make sure every necessary legal step has been taken the right way.

If done correctly an adoption attorney can help speed up the process, while at the same time saving you a potential headache.  One final step of the process requires a courtroom proceeding before a judge.  During this time you will be asked to provide a statement in regards to why you should be granted the adoption.

Attorneys can be helpful during these times, especially if you have a fear of public speaking or have not been before a judge in the past.  If you are considering adopting your stepchildren we are happy to provide a consultation.  Call The Ault Firm today at (801) 539-9000 to speak with an attorney today.