A Quick Guide to Texas Adoption
Texas Adoption Laws
All Texas adoptions regard procedures and laws under Chapter 162 of the Texas Family Code. This Chapter addresses adoption, and several laws are discussed throughout this article. You can also find information about the adoption process in this article as well. If you need legal advice and assistance, contact Texas lawyers.
Texas Adoption Requirements and Eligibility Factors
In the state of Texas, adoptions can occur as long as a person is over the age of 18 shows evidence of being able to provide for the child and meet their best interests.
However, certain people cannot adopt in the state of Texas. A Texas adoption cannot occur if the potential parent has a criminal record (in most cases), has shown any evidence of abuse or violence in the past, does not meet eligibility requirements according to a home study from a social worker, does not show evidence of being financially stable, or other reasons.
The Texas Adoption Process
Fortunately, Texas adoptions usually begin with two parents (regardless of sex and race) who are good standing citizens and ready for a child. The child must meet a number of eligibility factors under Sections 162.001, 162.501, and 162.504. The eligibility factors of the child are paraphrased below:
• the rights of the parents have been terminated
• a parent whose rights have not been terminated is the spouse of the petitioner and the proceeding is for stepparent Texas adoption
• the child is at least two years old; the parent-child relationship has been terminated for one parent; the person applying for adoption rights has been managing conservator or has had actual physical possession or control of the child for at least 6 months; or the person is the former stepparent and the non-terminated parent agrees to the adoption
• an adult may adopt another adult with adopted person’s consent
After a child has been placed for adoption by the natural parent, adoptive parent, legal guardian, a license child-placing agency, or the Department of Protective and Regulatory Services, Texas adoptions will go through a number of steps. These steps for Texas adoptions are listed below:
1. The prospective legal parent will file a petition to the court
2. a health, social, education, and genetic history report will be formulated the person petitioning, a child-placing agency, or any other social service
3. the person filing the petition for the Texas adoption will have to pass a criminal history report which deeply investigates any prospective parent’s past criminal history
4. Once the petition requesting termination has been filed along with the petition requesting adoption, the court will make a decision if the action is in the best interest of the child and then allow the Texas adoption
5. If the withdrawal of or denial of the petition has occurred, the court may remove the child from the adoptive home if the removal is in the child’s best interest
Texas adoptions will require more steps if the parent(s) is requesting a foreign adoption. Petitioners are always encouraged to contact an adoption attorney before beginning the adoption process.