Requirements for Filing an Adoption in Maryland
In Maryland there are complicated rules for processing different types of adoption. However, the Maryland Rules of Procedure spell out the requirements for information that must be included in the adoption filing as well as what documents must be produced to the court.
Required Contents of a Petition for AdoptionUnder Maryland Rule 9-103, a petition for adoption must include certain information referred to legally as the contents. The adopting parents must include a lot of content under Rule 9-103, including but not limited to: (1) Name, address, age and job of each adopting parent; (2) Birth date and place, name and sex of the child to be adopted; (3) Existing relationship between the child and each adopting parent, if any; (4) Name, address and age of the child's natural parents; (5) Method through which the adopting parents located the child to be adopted; (6) Name, address and age of the adopting parent(s) existing children, if any; (7) Criminal records of each adopting parent, if applicable; (8) Name, address and age of any person who has or had legal custody over the child to be adopted; and (9) Statement of compliance with the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children (ICPC), if applicable.
Required Exhibits for a Petition for AdoptionRule 9-103 also requires adopting parents to attach to their petition certain documents referred to legally as exhibits. There are many required exhibits under Rule 9-103, including but not limited to certified copies of the following: (1) Child's birth certificate or similar document; (2) Marriage certificate of each adopting parent; (3) Divorce judgment for either adopting parent; (4) Death certificate of any person whose consent would be required for adoption; and (5) Order concerning the child's legal custody or guardianship. Outside of the certified copies listed above Rule 9-103 requires the adopting parents to provide additional exhibits, including but not limited to: (1) A copy of any existing home study report from a licensed child placement agency, detailing the adopting parents' criminal background reports and child abuse clearances; (2) A document detailing the yearly income of each adopting parent; (3) The original versions of the parental consent and affidavit documents required for adoption; and (4) A medical report from a licensed physician that details the health status of each adopting parent.