Fighting For A Relative Or Stepparent Adoption
Deciding to adopt a child as a stepparent or relative is an exciting choice; you may now seek to make your parent-child bond official. While this can be a personally and legally meaningful time, some people encounter obstacles in the process.
Bruce & Bruce stands by prospective adoptive parents. Based in Muncie, our legal team can guide you through the paperwork and pursue parental rights for you. Like attorneys Rebecca and Steven Bruce, who are adoptive parents themselves, you have cared for a child as if he or she were your own. Now, we can help your family work toward your goals.
When A Biological Parent Contests Adoption
When a stepparent successfully adopts a child, the child’s noncustodial biological parent loses their parental rights. The biological parent may voluntarily agree to give up their rights to the child, which allows the adoption process to proceed. Rebecca Bruce can guide you through this entire process, from start to finish.
However, biological parents frequently refuse to consent to the adoption. If the biological parent chooses to contest the relative or stepparent adoption, the process may require litigation. Steven Bruce has extensive experience with litigating contested adoptions.
To win an adoption case in court, you may need to prove at least one of three conditions:
- The biological parent has failed to pay child support for a year or more
- The biological parent has failed to meaningfully participate in the child’s life for at least one year
- The biological parent is unfit to raise their child due to drug or alcohol abuse, domestic violence or another problem
- The child was abandoned for at least six months according to a court
- The biological parent did not establish paternity or otherwise did not have parental rights
We are ready to assess evidence of the biological parent’s actions and highlight where they may have fallen short of caring for the child. Under the above conditions, termination of parental rights could make a positive difference for the child as well as enable you to fully care for him or her. Our family law attorneys can also represent you throughout the appeals process when necessary.
Prepare For The Road Ahead
Whether your adoption is contested or uncontested, you may face hurdles along the way. Speak to our dedicated adoption lawyer at 765-876-3392 or through our website. Bruce & Bruce advocates for stepparents, aunts, uncles, grandparents and others who seek adoption in Indiana.