At Welton Law Firm, we focus on adoption in Florida. For current or prospective parents, the decision to make a transformation within your family is exciting and life-altering, but also legally complex. With our expertise and care, you can trust us to make the process of expanding your family as easy and rewarding as possible.
Who can be Adopted?
Generally speaking, any minor or adult can be adopted; however, in the case of a minor, unless excused by the court, the proper written consent for adoption must be received from:
a. The birth mother.
b. The birth father, if:
1. The minor was conceived or born while the father was married to the mother;
2. The minor is his child by adoption;
3. The minor has been adjudicated by the court to be his child by the date a petition is filed for termination of parental rights;
4. He has filed an affidavit of paternity pursuant to s. 382.013(2)(c) by the date a petition is filed for termination of parental rights; or
5. In the case of an unmarried biological father, he has acknowledged in writing, signed in the presence of a competent witness, that he is the father of the minor, has filed such acknowledgment with the Office of Vital Statistics of the Department of Health within the required time frames, and has complied with the requirements of s. 63.062 (2).
c. The minor, if 12 years of age or older, unless, in the best interests of the minor, the court dispenses with the minor’s consent.
d. Any person lawfully entitled to custody of the minor if required by the court.
e. The court having jurisdiction to determine custody of the minor, if the person having physical custody of the minor does not have authority to consent to the adoption.
Who can Adopt?
In Florida, to meet legal requirements the adoptive individual(s) must be:
1. A resident of the state (for at least 90 days)
2. Of good character
3. Able to nurture and provide for a child
4. A stepparent of the prospective adoptee
*Physically disabled individuals cannot be prohibited from adopting unless it is determined that their disability impedes their ability to effectively parent.
An adoption establishes a relationship between parent and adoptee that is legally the same as that between birthparent and child. This means that the established relationship will yield the same variety of circumstances that accompany an individual and their biological parent; for example, an individual inheriting the estate of a deceased parent is subject to state probate requirements.
There are four types of adoption recognized in Florida: adult adoption, close relative adoption, entity adoption, and step-parent adoption. It is important to determine which category of adoption is appropriate to your situation, as each determines both the procedure and the specifics of the relationship of the involved parties.
The processes within adoption are complex and complicated. Allow our attorneys, at Welton Law Firm to make it easy for you.