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FAMILY LAW ARTICLES

January 15, 2021
Consent to Adoption

Families form in many different ways, including through stepparent and relative adoption. Before this can happen, the other biological parent of the child must put their consent in writing. The signature needs to take place in front of a notary public, and the biological parent consenting to the adoption must file the official form with the appropriate judicial council.

Suppose the stepparent adoption is taking place in California. In that case, the biological parent signing the legal form must do so in the presence of a county social services worker or a court clerk judicial officer. All other states have the notary public requirement. Regardless of who officially witnesses the signature, it must contain an acknowledgment that the biological parent will file the form along with the other required adoption documents with the local court.

What to Expect After the Other Biological Parent Signs a Consent Form
Upon receipt of the stepparent adoption forms, a social worker from the local county’s social service department will investigate the adopting parent and the child’s home environment. The social worker conducting the investigation then submits a report to the local county court, and a court representative will follow up with your family for the next steps.

Rules for Independent Relative Adoptions in California
Assume a biological relative of the child other than the father or mother will be raising the child in California. In that case, the state’s social services department investigates all parties involved along with the child’s proposed home environment. A social service worker then files the report, and a county official sets a date to finalize the adoption.

Schedule a Consultation 
Hartley Lamas et al., Attorneys at Law, are pleased to have experienced family law attorney Frances Gutierrez on staff. She has several years of experience representing families in stepparent and independent relative adoptions in California. You may request a consultation to learn more about either process by completing the form at this link or calling  805-639-0600

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