Adoption is the process of establishing a legitimate parental and child relationship between individuals who are not related by blood. Each state has its own processes that are intended to promote the well-being of an adoptee by selecting parents who will best suit his or her needs.
Once the adoption process is finalized, the relationship between an adoptee and his or her biological parents is severed, immediately relieving the parental obligations and rights they once had in regard to said child by law. Adoptive parents are then granted these obligations and rights to the adopted child as if he or she was born to them. An adoptee will be entitled to the inheritance or estate of either adoptive parent, and have access to other legal rights that exist between a child and a parent.
The North Carolina adoption process is riddled with complexities and intricacies. The best way to ensure that the rights of both biological and adoptive parents are protected is with the assistance of a knowledgeable adoption attorney. A basic knowledge of the state's adoption policies and options also is important when considering adoption. For the purposes of this article, the attorneys at Caulder & Valentine will briefly address (1) North Carolina's adoption laws, and the (2) types of adoptions offered in the state. For more details regarding your individualized case, you should contact our firm.
North Carolina Adoption Laws
State statutes dictate that any minor or adult may be adopted by an adult over the age of 18. The consent of an adoptee is needed at the age of 12 or older to complete an adoption. This means that any adult may be adopted with their permission, with the exception of spouses adopting each other. The ages of an adoptive child and adoptive parent does not matter as long as they operate within the confines of state law.
North Carolina also requires that aspiring adoptive parents maintain a home residency in the state for at least 90 days prior to the finalization of an adoption.
Types of Adoptions in North Carolina
There are a variety of adoptions in the state. Couples and individuals who seek to adopt a person are granted the following options:
Independent adoptions: Also known as private adoptions, independent adoptions occur when an adoptee is located from North Carolina or another state without the assistance of an adoption agency.
Relative adoptions: When a relative of an adoptee wishes to adopt a child.
Stepparent adoptions: The husband or wife of a child's parent seeks to establish a legal relationship as parent and child.
Adult adoptions: Adoptive parents wish to become parents of an adult.
North Carolina Adoption Attorneys
North Carolina's adoption process is not simple. Fulfilling every requirement and thoroughly completing the appropriate paperwork to adopt a child requires the help of an attorney who is knowledgeable in the state's adoption laws. If you are contemplating adopting a child or adult, or considering putting your child up for adoption, you should contact the attorneys at Caulder & Valentine. We will help you navigate through the complex legal process with minimal issues. Contact us today for a free consultation.