It's an exciting time! You are about to grow your family through adoption. The adoption process isn't always easy, but you can count on our Michigan adoption lawyers to help you every step of the way.
Understanding Michigan Adoptions
Before you get started with the process of adoption, we want to share a little bit about the legal aspects of adoption with you. The adoption process varies depending on the child's age, your relationship to the child, and where the child currently lives.
Some common types of Michigan adoptions include:
- Infant adoptions. Birth parents may release the child to a child-placing agency. The agency will then select the adoptive parent. Alternatively, birth parents may choose the adoptive parent without an agency's involvement and directly transfer the baby's physical custody to the adoptive parent. All legal steps must be taken to transfer parental rights and custody to the adoptive parent.
- Court or state wards. Sometimes, birth parents' rights are terminated before adoption occurs. In these cases, children become wards of the state. The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (DHS) is responsible for making adoptive placements of these children. Approximately 90% of parents who adopt court or state wards are foster parents or relatives of the children they seek to adopt.
- Relative adoptions. A relative is defined as someone related to the person being adopted within the fifth degree. The relation may be by blood, marriage, or adoption. Generally, courts can help a relative with the adoption if parental rights are or should be terminated.
- Stepparent adoptions. If the non-custodial parent is living, then the non-custodial parent must either agree to the adoption or the parental rights of the non-custodial parent must be terminated by the court.
- International or interstate adoptions. If you want to adopt a child from anywhere outside the state, Michigan will recognize the adoption as long as the adoption occurs according to the laws of the other state or country where the adoption occurred.
- Adult adoptions. The adult adoptee should consent to the adoption.
Contact a Michigan Adoption Attorney Today
Adoption is often a challenging process with the best possible reward. As an adoptive parent, you want to make sure that your new addition is a legal part of your family forever. Our Bloomfield Hills family law attorneys want to make that happen for you. Call us, text us, or complete our online contact form to schedule a complimentary initial legal consultation.