When you’re considering legalizing an existing parent-child relationship you have with another adult, it’s important to first understand exactly how to adopt an adult before you commit to this kind of adoption. While the adult adoption process is fairly straightforward and cost-effective, you will always need to work with an experienced adoption attorney to move forward with an adult adoption in Pennsylvania.
The adoption attorneys at Bierly & Rabuck can provide all of the legal services you need to complete an adult adoption in Pennsylvania. We encourage you to contact our offices at 814-237-7900 before starting this adoption process, so we can explain what you can expect and help you understand what adoption options are available to you.
Each adult adoption is different, but there are some general similarities when it comes to the adult adoption process in Pennsylvania. Keep reading this article to learn more.
Things to Consider About the Adult Adoption Process in PA
As you learn more about how to adopt an adult child or individual, know that there are some important legal requirements that need to be met when completing an adult adoption.
Because an adult adoption takes place between two consenting adults, there is no requirement for background investigations like a home study or consents from the adoptee’s biological parents. In Pennsylvania, an adult wishing to be adopted does not need to notify their legal parents or gain their consent to the adoption before proceeding with the legal adult adoption process.
When two individuals move forward with an adult adoption, they recognize that the adoptee’s biological parent’s rights will be terminated. This means that an adoptee will lose the right to inheritance and other familial benefits when the adult adoption is finalized. While they will gain these rights from their new adoptive parents, all adoptees should consider this consequence and understand what it might mean for their personal relationships. An adoption attorney like those at Bierly & Rabuck can further explain the legal ramifications of an adult adoption process in Pennsylvania.
In most cases, two consenting adults can move forward with an adult adoption in Pennsylvania. However, there are some circumstances that may disallow an adoption process, like:
- If the adult adoptee or adoptive parent has been convicted of a felony or faces criminal charges
- If the adult adoptee is not competent enough to understand what’s going on
- If there was a pre-existing sexual relationship between the adult wanting to adopt and the adult being adopted
- If fraudulent reasons are suspected for seeking the adoption
No matter what your situation, it’s important to contact an experienced legal professional to gain a better understanding of how to adopt an adult in your particular situation.
How to Adopt an Adult: The Legal Steps
The legal adult adoption process in Pennsylvania is a fairly straightforward one. Generally, there are three steps involved:
- Filing an adoption petition.
- Obtaining consents from the adult adoptee and the adopting adults.
- Finalizing the adoption in court.
When you work with the adoption attorneys at Bierly & Rabuck, you will have legal guidance through every step of this process. Your adoption attorney will be there from beginning to end of your adult adoption process to make sure all of the proper legal steps are followed.
Here’s how to adopt an adult in Pennsylvania with our firm:
- First, your adoption attorney will explain the adult adoption process to you. They will learn more about your particular situation and how it may affect your personal adoption process. When they have gathered all of the necessary information and determined that an adult adoption is possible, they will start the legal process.
- Your adoption attorney will obtain the necessary consents from all individuals. This will include the adult wishing to be adopted, the adopting adult and their spouse. Your attorney will guide you through the paperwork required to complete your personal consents.
- Once the necessary paperwork is gathered, your adoption attorney will submit an adoption petition to the appropriate court to initiate the legal adult adoption process.
- Your adoption attorney will then arrange for your adoption finalization hearing. They will accompany you to this hearing, which may require you to answer some questions and confirm some details to the overseeing judge. At this finalization hearing, an adoption certificate will be issued.
- After finalization, your adoption attorney will help obtain a birth certificate for the new adoptee and assist in any name change processes. At this point, your adult adoption process will be complete.
The attorneys at Bierly & Rabuck will also provide any case management and education services you need throughout your adult adoption process. We are happy to help individuals like you legalize an existing parent-child relationship and establish and protect your legal rights.
Because each adult adoption process is unique, how to legally adopt an adult may vary depending on your individual situation. The best course of action is to contact an adoption attorney as soon as you start considering an adult adoption. They can help you understand all the legal steps that may await you.
To learn more about how to adopt an adult in Pennsylvania, please contact our experienced adoption attorneys today.