There are many reasons why an adult would seek adoption.
An adult adoptee could have a step parent who he/she has developed a special bond with and seeks the step parent’s last name. An adult adoptee may want to inherit from the step parent. A foster child who could not have been adopted as a child could seek adult adoption if adoption as a child was not permissible.
With any of those reasons, Texas law permits an adoption of an adult. The adoption process can become complicated and we recommend seeking the help of a seasoned family attorney for your adoption process. Our firm has represented many clients seeking adoption. Here is a guideline to the process of adult adoption.
To seek an adoption a petition for adoption would have to be filed in a court of proper jurisdiction. Under Texas law, the adult to be adopted must provide a formal consent to the adoption. The consent would be filed with the Court.
Once the petition and the consent is filed, a court date would be provided for a hearing. The adopter (person adopting the adult), the adoptee must be present. Other family members can attend as well. The adoptee can request the Court to change his or her last name to the adopter’s name. Once granted, families usually take photos in the courthouse to memorialize the day of adoption.
The next few steps are to get the changes made in all government documents or governmental assistance documents. If the adoptee is on financial or governmental assistance, then changes would have to be made with all such departments as well.
Benefits of an Adult Adoption
There are various benefits of an adult adoption. The most pronounced being that the adult adoptee can legally inherit from the adopter through a will or a trust. The adopter can also inherit from the adoptee through the adoptee’s will or trust.
Another benefit is that the adoptee can legally take the adopter’s family name. For an adoptee who had been raised by a step parent or a foster parent, this often is the main reason why an adoptee would seek formal adoption.
Finally, an adult adoption is simpler than a child adoption. Without the legal formalities of providing extensive criminal background checks and child protective services being involved, adult adoption is a faster process.
When Can an Adoption Be Denied
Courts are thorough in their hearings before they grant adoptions. If an adoptee is seeking adoption to change name in an effort to defraud creditors, then a Court would deny the adopt. If a Court finds that the adopter or adoptee filed the adoption paperwork under some form of duress, it would deny the adoption.
Finally, a Court would deny adoption if it finds that the adoptee or adopter is undergoing the process to receive benefits under immigration law.
Adoptions while exciting, can be intricate. Our firm has represented parties in adoption with many different set of facts and circumstances. Call Our Office! We will be happy to assist you in your adoption needs.