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Do I need to hire a lawyer? What is the possible cost?

Kissimmee, FL |

We are immigrants and residents of Osceola County, Florida for a year. My niece is with us since birth. We filed for adoption in my country and was granted last year but final document of birth certificate has not arrived. Can we do adoption here in Fl.? Can we do it ourselves or do we need a lawyer? How much do you think is the costs? My brother, the biological father, is a CT resident. Should we file in Fl or Ct?My niece lives with us here in FL.She will be turning 16 in a few months. Will there be issues with her immigration documents?
Thank you for any info you can share.

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Attorney answers 5

Best Answer

Hmmm...the issue is not so much whether or not you can petition to adopt your niece, but you mentioned the question: "will there be issues with her immigration documents". Adoptions which are not what is called "stepparent adoptions" which is when the mother is married to a non-biological father of the child, but the legal and/or biological father of the child gives his consent, for instance, are relatively simple. Other types of adoptions are extremely complicated and you should not attempt to do such adoption on your own!!

However, all that said, because of your question, it appears there is much more to it than an adoption. The Court would want to look as to the reasons why the adoption is taking place. That is, the family court as well as any other possible federal immigration court which may be involved.

You need to speak with a lawyer of your choice to review all of your questions, factors and concerns before proceeding to do something through the legal system which you may later regret.

Alejandro R. Lopez, Esq.
Law Office of Alejandro R. Lopez, P.A.
4465 Edgewater Dr.,
Suite A
Orlando, Fla. 32804
(407) 649-1404


Adoption needs to be competed prior to age 16 also see the Hague convention countries to find out if that applies.

Reza Athari
Attorney at Law
Certified Specialist - Immigration and Nationality Law
State Bar of California - Board of Legal Specialization

Main office: Las Vegas, Nevada
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This looks very messy and complicated.

Talk to an attorney face-to-face. Many of us do Skype consultations and provide fee quotes.

FORMER IMMIGRATION LAW PROFESSOR -- LEGAL DISCLAIMER: This answer is offered for informational purposes only. It does not constitute an attorney-client relationship.


If you are going to do your adoption in the U.S., you must complete it in the state where the child lives, presumably Florida, based on what you've said. Florida law doesn't specify any necessary citizenship or residency status for the child. But, given the issues in your case, you should certainly speak to a lawyer.

The contents of this answer should be considered friendly advice, not legal advice (I'm a pretty friendly guy), and the answer should not be construed to constitute an attorney-client relationship. If you'd like actual legal advice, call me for a free consultation at 813-635-0222. Also, if you liked this answer as much as my big ego thinks you did, be sure to click the thumbs-up button!


A foreign adoption should br completed first in the foreign country and then you must "re adopt," in the USA. It sounds like you have completed the foreign adoption. You now need to complete the "re adoption," here in the USA.

The adoption in the USA is filed with the circuit court in the jurisdiction where the child and adoptive parents live. You will file at your County Court House. It is also very important that you attempt to complete this process before she turns 16 for immigration purposes.

I strongly suggest you bite the bullit and hire an attorney experienced in international adoption and immigration to assist you and attempt to get this adoption completed before your niece turns 16.

I work in the Orlando area. Call me if you would like assistance.

Kyndra L Mulder, Esquire
(904) 296-7702