How do you adopt a family members child?

Asked about 4 years ago - Villa Rica, GA

i have a meth addicted family member that wants to give up her unborn child.. how would i go about legelly adopting her baby when shes born? and what would my family members rights be when the child is older?

Attorney answers (3)

  1. Glen Edward Ashman


    Contributor Level 20

    Answered . There are many details I'd need to answer, but it certainly can be done. A key is the level of cooperation of the father, and that affects the process greatly. My office handles such cases so feel free to call me.

  2. Birney O'Brian Bull

    Contributor Level 13

    Answered . As Mr. Ashman said, there are many details your question does not address. For example, if you are married, your spouse should join the petition; if you are not married, Georgia law requires that you be at least 25 years old. And if the biological father’s identity is known, he would indeed be entitled to notice of the process. He can consent (better for the child), or he may simply not oppose it, or he may even be so opposed as to seek custody himself. (While highly unlikely, if it does actually happen, that scenario could get ugly quick.)

    Adoption is complicated --- more complicated than many attorneys realize. You should consult an attorney with adoption experience.

    If you complete the adoption, your other family members’ rights would be the same as if YOU gave birth biologically rather than the biological mother.

    Feel free to consult my website for further information. God Bless!

  3. Sherry Virginia Neal

    Contributor Level 11

    Answered . I, too, recommend that you consult with an attorney experienced not only in adoption generally but also with relative adoptions. As has already been noted, you will have to deal with the rights of the birth father as well as of the birth mother. In addition, you do not say whether the birth mother is here in Georgia. If she is not, that is a complicating factor. An attorney can discuss with you the details of getting surrenders from or terminating the rights of the birth parents, the possibility of having a home study done, other laws that might affect your care, and the adoption process itself.

    With regard to your family's rights, adoption terminates existing legal relationships between birth parents and the child and creates new ones. Legally, you would become the child's parent and the child's legal relationships to others in the family would stem from the child's relationship to you.

    I always recommend that relatives first contact the Georgia Legal Services Program or the Atlanta Legal Aid Society to see if they qualify for free services. Both assist some relative caregivers with adoption matters. That said, I have extensive experience with relative adoption matters and would be happy to discuss the particulars of your situation with you. Please feel free to contact me.

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