Stepchild Adoption in Wisconsin
Many stepparents are especially close with their stepchildren, building bonds with them much like a biological parent would. In your case, you may already consider your stepchild your child, regardless of biology. In these cases, you may already be considering adopting them.
That gives your family members benefits that they might otherwise not have, but you may not be familiar with the process of stepchild adoption in Wisconsin. Fortunately, a lawyer from Karp & Iancu, S.C. can help you understand the process. If you’re not sure what to do to adopt, reaching out for help may be the best way to start.
Termination of Parental Rights in Wisconsin
When you’re seeking to adopt, one important step is terminating the biological parents’ rights to the child. You and your spouse may have raised the child together for some time, but their former spouse may still have legal rights as a parent.
To adopt the child, the other parent must lose their rights as a parent to the child. That means that they are no longer legally a parent, and they’re no longer responsible for the care of the child. Unfortunately, the birth parent may not be willing to give up these rights to the child.
If this happens, you may need a Wisconsin attorney on your side. They can help you file a petition to have their rights to the child terminated in certain situations.
The Stepchild Adoption Process in WI
Once the birth parent has given up their rights, or when these rights have been terminated, you can then begin the process for adoption. Fortunately, the right lawyer can walk you through the most difficult parts of this process.
Once you have an attorney’s help, you can then begin the process to adopt your stepchild, also called investigation. This investigation is a home study to ensure you’re a suitable parent. That may include the following steps:
- References from others
- Background checks
- Mental evaluations
Once you’ve passed this check, you can then petition the court to adopt your stepchild. Your lawyer can help you file the proper paperwork and information you need. Once this step is complete, you may be granted parental rights to your stepchild, including the option for a name change and a new birth certificate that includes your name.
Talk to a Wisconsin Lawyer about Adopting a Stepchild
While you may or may not be a biological parent, you might be closer to your stepchild than many biological parents. That bond may lead you to seek stepchild adoption in Wisconsin. Unfortunately, the process can feel daunting, since you’re dealing with an investigation, paperwork, and possibly a fight against the right of their other parent.
Fortunately, you and your spouse don’t have to seek adoption in Wisconsin alone. Instead, a family lawyer from Karp & Iancu, S.C. can give you the information and guidance you need for the adoption process. When you need legal support during this difficult case, your attorney can provide that help.
If you’re struggling with adoption and you’re not sure where to begin, reach out for a consultation. Your lawyer can be reached by calling 414-453-0800 or by completing our online form at the bottom of the page.