A considerable amount of people have at some point considered giving themselves up for adoption, whether as a joke or seriously. But are you capable of doing it? This is debatable.
Basically, adults who have someone wanting to adopt them can start the adoption process for themselves. However, it is far more difficult for children at say 11, 12, 13, 15, or 16 years old to put themselves up for adoption. Their parents’ rights must be terminated by the state, or they must die or willingly relinquish them. But what exactly does it mean to be adopted?
Adoption is the legal procedure through which someone becomes the legal child of someone else. The adoptive parents will be named on a new birth certificate, rather than the biological parents.
As soon as the adoption is completed, the adopted parent or parents are the legal parents for all purposes, including inheritance. Also, when identifying the next of kin for medical decision-making, adoptive parents will be considered as well.
This post explaining how to put yourself up for adoption whether as an adult or as a minor at 11, 12, 13, 15, or 16 years old.
How to Put Yourself Up For Adoption As An Adult
There are hardly any adoption agencies that will put you with a new family if you are 18 or older. But if you can locate someone willing to adopt you, then there is a chance. But here are the steps you must take:
#1. Look For An Adult Willing to Adopt You
Adult adoptions are usually used to establish a relationship that isn’t based on biology. Later in life, stepparents may adopt their stepchildren. Elderly people may choose to adopt a child or a younger person who has been valuable to them.
However, adult adoption is sometimes done for legal reasons rather than for sentimental reasons. Adoption establishes a parent-child bond with all of the advantages that entails. This involves things like inheritance, medical decisions, and visitation rights, among other things.
#2. Research Adult Adoption Laws in Your State
The Adoption Procedure is governed by state law. You must examine the legislation of the state where you live in order to choose your next steps. Adult adoption is not permitted in some states. Even more have limitations due to disability, age disparities, and other marital circumstances.
Some states, for example, stipulate that the adoptee should be younger than the adopter. The adopter must be at least ten years younger than the other individual, according to Nevada law.
Meanwhile, as earlier mentioned, state-by-state limits differ significantly. If you don’t meet the requirements where you live, you may need to relocate to a state with more accommodating legislation.
#3. Find the Case Filing Forms
Adoption proceedings are handled by state courts. The person who is adopting you must file a petition to initiate the case in order for a judge to hear your case. Several extra forms will almost certainly be required as part of the procedure.
Many states provide free online court forms through the court or state website. You might be able to purchase the forms online if you can’t find them for free. People buy blank paperwork for filing cases without an attorney on Legal Zoom, a popular website.
If you can’t find the forms for free or buy them, you’ll need to speak with an attorney. An attorney can help you draft and file the forms.
Many lawyers bill based on the amount of time they spend on your case. If they are not representing you at a hearing, some attorneys will charge a fixed fee for document preparation. T
#4. Follow the Court’s Instructions
The petitioner will very certainly need to have you served with the initial papers after filing them with the court. In most cases, there are several steps in the paperwork process.
You may receive an order from the court to file another stage of documents after completing one. This is usually as you proceed through the case’s various stages.
#5. Appear At The Hearing
Expect a hearing to conclude your case. A hearing is a court session that takes place in front of a judge or magistrate. Both you and the person who is adopting you must attend.
The judge will invite every one of you to speak up and explain what you’re attempting to accomplish. He/She may question both of you. A judge may make a decision while you are still present in court. The judge will simply tell you whether or not your request is granted.
The judge will issue a written order even if they make their decision during the hearing. If the judge approves the adoption, he or she will sign an adoption decree. This document serves as formal proof of your adoption, and you may be required to present it to others.
Overcoming Parental Opposition to be Adopted into a New Family
Adoptions are rarely (if ever) disputed. In most situations, all of the hurdles to adoption have been resolved by the time a child is adopted.
In most cases, if the parents oppose to the adoption, a proceeding to terminate the parents’ rights takes place first. To a large extent, the state initiates these proceedings. When the state intervenes, the circumstances differ. This is dependent on the family’s status, the government’s resources, the laws of the state, and the location of the family.
Only in the direst of circumstances will the state intervene to take a kid from a household and launch a termination case. In the United States, a parent’s rights to his or her child is quite strong. It is difficult to break them. (As they ought to be.)
In cases where parents neglect their children, the state may intervene. They may also file a complaint if parents abuse their children, or they may simply leave. Most parents will be offered opportunities to better themselves or their situation. However, they will not be allowed a second chance if they have committed abuse or other heinous acts against or in front of children.
It's crucial to remember that poverty isn't grounds to take a child away from a parent.
When one of the parents is missing and adoption is attempted, things grow especially complicated.
What You Should Know About Adoptions
You should be aware that, unlike Tinder or Bumble, there isn’t usually a location where you can “give yourself up for adoption.” There is no paperwork to fill out in order to be entered into a database and adopted, like there is with medical insurance or joining the army.
But the real questions are; “Are you (in the United States) under the age of 18?” “Will your parents agree to relinquish their parental rights voluntarily?” Otherwise, your choices are limited.
You’d have to be in a situation where the state would intervene and start termination proceedings. None of that I would want on you. I wouldn’t want you to go looking for it.
However, if you are being harmed by someone in your home, you should take action. You should intervene if someone in your home is causing harm to others. You should seek assistance if you are hungry, unsafe, or are being exposed to drugs or drug usage, or if you are experiencing domestic abuse.
Making a report to the local child welfare agency is one method to start this procedure. Tell them the truth about your situation. I can’t speak for every agency, but these reports are usually kept private.
You could also speak with someone who is a “mandated reporter” for child abuse or neglect. Social workers, teachers, and principals are all included. Doctors, nurses, therapists, and child care workers are also included. This is also a responsibility for lawyers and police officials. These people could file a report with the local child protective services agency to start an inquiry.
How to Put Yourself For Adoption as a Minor at 11, 12, 13, 15, or 16 Years Old
Adoption proceedings cannot be initiated voluntarily by those under the age of 18. Instead, only a few cases qualify a minor for adoption:
- Being in a position when the state steps in and ends your parent-child bond with your birth parents. The abuse or neglect in these instances is criminal.
- Someone else adopts you after your parents abandon their parental rights.
- You are adopted by a step-parent.
- The Parent-Child Relationship Has Ended
Parenthood is a legal state that applies to the parents listed on a child’s birth certificate, which are usually the biological parents. Only the courts or the death of the parent may put an end to it.
At any given time, a kid can only have two legal parents. When a kid is born to two live parents, there are only two options for adoption. The legal system or the death of a parent might put an end to the parent-child relationship.
Intervention By The State In The Parent-Child Relationship
Every state has a child welfare system in place to safeguard the safety of its residents’ children. In extreme cases, the state will ask the court to legally dissolve the parent-child relationship through its attorneys.
The family is usually reported to the state’s child welfare department. Other times, the case is sent to the state’s attorneys by law enforcement. This is a lengthy and time-consuming procedure that should only be used in really dangerous conditions. Many states allow parents to rehabilitate and reunite with their children before terminating their parental rights.
If a parent’s parental rights are eventually removed, the child will be eligible for adoption. If the kid has a living parent, that parent has the option of consenting or objecting to the adoption.
For long-term care, children are frequently placed with other family members. They are unlikely to be adopted. And because they have nowhere else to go, many children find up in foster care and group homes.
Is It Possible That Parents Will Be Able to Relinquish Parental Rights
As part of an adoption process, certain states enable parents to relinquish or give up their parental rights. Without a potential adoptive parent, it is practically impossible for a parent to give up their rights and duties.
When a parent is supportive of the adoption, relinquishment as part of the adoption is most common. The adoptive parent or parents may be known to the birth parent through family, friends, or church.
In an open adoption, birth parents may work with an adoption agency and get to know the adoptive parents. The birth parent(s) then relinquish their parental rights during the adoption process.
Adoptions by Step-Parents
Step-parent adoption is when a person adopts the children of their present spouse from a former partner. The other parent must be deceased, have their rights terminated, or agree to relinquish them. If any of those three scenarios apply, the stepparent can seek adoption through the state court system.