My childs father has not been in her life for some years now and has recently asked me to terminate his parental rights and alleviate himself of financial responsibility. I am getting married next month and my husband-to-be is willing to adopt my child and take on all responsibility.
I have contacted a couple attorneys today, but I am concerned about the cost required for retainer. Is an attorney absolutely necessary for this or is it possible to do myself since all parties are in agreement? If I can do this myself, what does the process entail, and whats my first move to get things moving?
Personal Injury Lawyer
An adoption has a lot of steps and takes time. I don't know how someone can do it without an attorney.
973-984-0800. Please be advised my answers to questions does not constitute legal advice and you should not rely on it, due to the fact that we have never met, I have not been aprised of the facts in you case nor have I reviewed any documents.
You may want to check to see if any attorneys on Avvo have published a Legal Guide as to this issue. The chance of obtaining a comprehensive answer to a posted question that calls for extensive legal advice is slim.
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Divorce / Separation Lawyer
There are some self help forms available at the NJ Courts online website and probably more at your local law library, but handling an adoption, even one by consent, is not an easy matter. If I have need of a surgeon, I don't try and go to a self-help source. Sometimes, a lawyers' most complicated case is handliing a case that had been started pro se and trying to handle some problem or oversight (not to say that attorneys never make mistakes). I would at least seek a consultation with an attorney to understand what is required.
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Family Law Attorney
Stepparent adoption procedures vary greatly county-by-county and can be very difficult to navigate without an attorney. You can certainly begin the process on your own (i.e. obtain fingerprints and background check), but I highly recommend that you consult with an experienced Family Law attorney who can guide you through the process. The article located at the link provided below will also provide some additional helpful information. Best of luck to you and your family!
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