I have been in a relationship with my husband for 7 years and married for 2. He has 3 kids from a previous marriage. The kids have been living with us full time for the past 6 years. My husband got 100% physical and legal custody of the children when she didn't show up to the hearing. The last time she paid child support was in March of 2013 when her then-husband filed taxes with her and their refund was intercepted. She hasn't held a steady job because she doesn't want to pay for child support. The contact between her and the kids has been sporadic and recently (02/2016) She just packed up and moved to Georgia (unreliable much?). She has 4 other children from different fathers and is not capable of supporting them plus paying child support for the ones I have in my home. I would like to adopt them to be able to put them on my life insurance policy and other legal paperwork without having to worry about her coming into their lives because they may have inherited something from me.
Feasible yes; simple no. There are a lot of factors that come into play in seeking to terminate parental rights (thus clearing the way for you to adopt). You are going to want to hire an experienced family law attorney to help go through your situation in detail to discuss options, logistics, and cost. Part of that discussion should include what it is you are trying to accomplish. Some of the items you mention, such as allowing them to be beneficiaries of your life insurance, do not require they be adopted - so there may be alternatives to adoption (such as guardianship, or perhaps just some wise financial/estate planning) that may meet your goals. It will be well worth a consultation with an attorney in person to discuss these matters and map out some of your options. Best of luck.
Based on the information provided, it does sound like you have a good case for a step-parent adoption. However, this is a complicated process and should not be taken on as a "DIY" project. You would best serve yourself and the children by finding an adoption attorney in your area to guide you through the process.
The answer given is not legal advice and does not imply that an attorney-client relationship has been established. Your best course of action is to have legal representation in this matter
This is, as noted by Idaho counsel, a difficult process. It's also a two-step process, and the first one is a big one -- termination of parental rights. This is something that courts do not undertake lightly. You might contact the bio mother and see if she is agreeable. The carrot would be that you would no longer be garnishing money for future child support. If the state doesn't have any skin in the game, then you could also offer to forgive past support obligations as well. Go see a good attorney in your area who does adoption work. Good luck.
I hope you found this response to be helpful. If so, your clicking "helpful" and/or "best answer" would be appreciated. This answer is merely my personal view on the subject and is not intended to constitute legal advice nor does it create an attorney-client relationship. Further, my response is based upon the limited facts that were provided in the question and therefore my view might well be different if I was informed of additional or different facts or circumstances. Further, I am only licensed to practice law in the states of Idaho and Montana. You should not take any action or refrain from taking any action in reliance upon my view set forth herein, rather you should consult counsel who is licensed to practice in the state having jurisdiction over this matter.
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