Choosing to adopt a child is always a noble thing to do. As adopting parents, you’re giving a child a brand-new home, life, and family to call their very own. Every child deserves to have a sense of belonging, and you’re able to do just that.
Before welcoming your adopted child into your home forever, there’s a lot to be done. It’s undoubtedly going to be an emotional and draining process, too. There are many legalities involved, all to prove you’re the best fit for the child, you can care for them, and it’s in the child’s best interest to belong to your family. To do all these, you’ll need a team of professionals on board from day one until that final ‘Gotcha’ day or when you finally sign the adoption papers.
Family or adoption lawyers should be on your team when you’re going through the whole adoption process. Here’s why:
- They Help You Throughout The Process
So, you’ve read about a hundred self-help books about adoption. You’ve consulted friends who are adoptive parents themselves. You may have even started searching around and meeting with a social worker. These are tremendous efforts on your part, and it will show the courts that you are, indeed, serious about becoming a good adoptive parent.
However, this doesn’t necessarily mean you’re now a master of the adoption process. There are so many intricacies involved in every step, which only a seasoned adoption lawyer can help you out with. They can walk you through and help you with the whole adoption process from start to finish.
Remember, there are different types of adoptions, such as adopting a family member, an infant immediately after birth, a teenager, or an adult child, among others. The process can differ, depending on the type of adoption. Hence the need for a lawyer.
- They Know The Adoption Laws
For the most part, adoption is governed by state and international laws. If you’re adopting domestically, then your state laws apply. If you’re applying internationally, you have to consider the international laws on adoption, the laws in the state where you’re from and where the child you’re looking to adopt is from.
Without a lawyer helping you out, you might find out later on that you’ve missed out on some legal requirement which can hamper or delay the process even more. Moreover, even a simple thing like filling out the necessary paperwork can be time-consuming and confusing for adopting parents. It’ll be faster and with fewer errors when a family or adoption lawyer does everything for you.
- They Can Help Move The Adoption Forward
It’s not just legal or documentary challenges that can hinder the progress of adoption. There could be instances such as the mother wanting to have the baby back, stillbirth when you decide to adopt a baby yet to be born, or even a medical condition that may render the child terminally ill.
Adoption is complicated enough as it is. Without a lawyer, the adoption process may be halted, or its progress may be hampered.
You can keep this from happening if you have a family lawyer helping to sort out complications as they arise. They have the expertise and experience to keep the adoption process moving forward.
- They Will Represent You In Court
In an ideal world, the adoption process should be smooth and hassle-free. But problems are sometimes unavoidable. When issues arise, you can count on an experienced lawyer to find a legal remedy.
For example, the adoption process has already started and is about to be finalized. However, the biological mother shows up at that final moment and decides she wants to have her child back. If the child knows his mother, this unexpected scenario could also be confusing for him. And that’s a tricky situation to navigate on your own.
While such a situation may be rare, you’ll never know if it could happen to you. It’s best to be proactive and have a lawyer assisting you throughout the process.
You may have previously thought you could proceed with the adoption process without a lawyer by your side. For the reasons cited above, hiring a lawyer is the best thing you can do as adopting parents to smooth out the entire process.
Adoption has its fair share of ups and downs, especially when you don’t know where to start. If you’ve been contemplating adopting a child, perhaps the first thing you should do is consult with a family or adoption lawyer.