I am married. We started dating March 2015, and got married August 2017. I have 2 children with someone else. The biological father and I were never married. We don’t have a child custody or visitation set through court. We came to a mutual agreement on child support so we did not go to court over that. We done a phone conference with child support. The biological father has consented for my husband to do a step parent adoption. I don’t know how to go about this. I was told I could get the adoption papers from the court clerk and all I had to do was fill them out. The biological father told me to do what I needed to do and he would sign papers or show up for court. How much is this since it’s non contested? Would I need a lawyer? I have never been through this before and I need some advice.
You definitely need to hire an attorney to make sure the paperwork is done right. The legal fees are reasonable if the matter is uncontested. You should seek a consultation with an attorney to discuss the cost and the process. AVVO is a great resource for locating an attorney.
The Clerk does not have forms that you can fill out, and to be frank I've had experience with jurisdictions that offer "check box" pleadings and they usually create problems that pop up in the future. You will want an attorney to help you with the process, however, because adoption statutes are strictly construed -- meaning that if everything isn't done just right the adoption could be attacked later on.
Since it's a stepparent adoption the Court can dispense with some of the steps, but you will need a hearing.
Although every attorney sets their own fees (so we can't tell you how much your attorney would charge), because everyone consents to the adoption the fees should be reasonable.
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