Aurora Adoption Lawyer

Adoption is a legal means by which a person becomes a member of a family different from that person's birth family. Once a decree of adoption has been entered, the adoptive parents gain the same rights and responsibilities as parents whose children are born to them. Adoptive parents must provide nurture, care and support to the child. An adopted child has the same inheritance rights as a child born to birth parents. Adoptive parents are real parents in every sense.


Adult adoption is the process whereby a person eighteen years or older is adopted by one or more person also eighteen years or older. Written consent is required by the proposed adoptee.


Agency adoptions are handled through a licensed child placement agency. In Missouri, agencies are licensed by the Department of Social Services. When a prospective adoptive family contacts an agency, the social workers counsel the family while it's on the agency's waiting list. Birth mothers contact the agency to make their adoption plan and usually select an adoptive family from the agency's list of interested families.

To be eligible for foster parent adoption, the adoptive parents must qualify and be certified as a foster adoptive placement by the State of Missouri. Upon qualification, the adoptive parents will be contacted by Children's Division with placement options. Children's Division also conducts adoption fairs periodically to match available children with compatible foster adoptive homes. State and federal subsidies cover placement and support expenses. The subsidies also usually cover all of the legal expense and costs associated with the adoption process.


Independent adoption occurs when birth parents and adoptive families find each other on their own or through the help of an adoption intermediary, e.g. a pastor, lawyer, or doctor. The adoption intermediary or the adoptive family's attorney facilitates the placement. Thereafter, an agency or social worker conducts interviews and visits for a six-month custody period and files its assessment with the court at the time of the adoption finalization.


Relative adoption frequently occurs because the birth parent is still a minor, has died or is disabled, or the child has been removed due to abuse and neglect. Another relative assumes physical custody and responsibility for the child.


In a stepparent adoption the family trying to adopt is a birth parent and a new spouse, usually following a divorce from or death of a prior spouse.

More information on the Adoption Process