Our law firm is a dedicated advocate for stepparents, grandparents, foster parents, same-sex families, and biological parents alike.
Tell us about your adoption-related needs - We'll tell you how we can help! Call our Houston Adoption Lawyers at (713) 909-7323 to arrange a confidential consultation, or contact us online 24/7.
If you have been working through an adoption agency, we can counsel you through the process to ensure that you understand your rights as you seek to adopt your child. If you are going through other private channels, like using relatives or close friends as surrogates and adopting after birth, we can represent you through all stages of the process, including drafting surrogacy agreements and preparing for postpartum issues including the termination of parental rights.
The amount of time it takes to complete an adoption depends on several factors – namely, complexity. In order to finalize an adoption in Texas, you’ll need to make sure the birthparents’ parental rights are terminated. If the child's mother waived these rights, you can use the waiver in court to simplify the legal proceedings. If the adoption is contested, however, terminating parental rights can take more time. Complicating factors (such as contested rights) are one of the many reasons individuals looking to adopt choose to work with an adoption lawyer.
Many international adoptions are closed adoptions, whereas many domestic adoptions – where the child and adoptive parents are in the United States – often lean towards open adoptions. In an open adoption, the birthparent(s) may have some say in who adopts the child. They might, for example, review profiles of potential adoptive parents and choose the family that they think will be best. Open adoption also allows the adoptive parents and birth mother to meet before the child is born and stay in contact throughout the pregnancy. In some cases, the adoptive parents may be able to witness the child’s birth.
Our Houston adoption attorneys have represented grandparents, couples conceiving through surrogacy, and surrogate mothers during newborn adoption proceedings. Regardless of what your position is with respect to a child, our adoption lawyers want you to understand your rights and help you secure the best possible outcome for your family.
One of the most common types of adoptions is stepparent adoptions: those who marry into families with existing children, and who wish to become the legal guardians of their step-kids through the adoption process.
Not only is this an emotionally meaningful act, it's also a legally essential one: without status as a legal guardian, stepparents have no rights to protect their children in the event that the biological parent dies, is incarcerated, or otherwise becomes unable to perform his or her parental duties. By officially becoming a legal guardian by adoption, stepparents gain peace of mind that they will always be able to protect their kids.
Our attorneys work with stepparents who seek to adopt their stepchildren in situations where the other biological parent either consents or objects to the proposed adoption. We can also represent biological parents who want to retain their parental rights when a stepparent seeks to adopt their children.
If you are part of an LGBT family, we can help you evaluate your options for adoption in Texas, whether it involves the child of one of the parents from a former relationship/marriage, a private agency adoption, or any other arrangement. While Texas has no formal prohibition on same-sex adoptions, family courts handle these cases inconsistently, so it is important not to jeopardize your opportunity to adopt a child by proceeding incorrectly.
Grandparents seeking to adopt their grandchildren can sometimes be straightforward. When your children are simply in no position to care for their own kids, they may willingly sign a power of attorney giving you the power to say where the child lives and to make decisions for the child. In other cases, the process of obtaining custody or becoming your grandchild's legal guardian may require a lawsuit in court requesting custody.
We're a big state with families from all parts of the country. It's common, therefore, for adoptive parents to have cases that involve interstate adoption issues. Interstate adoption cases require adoptive parents to have legal counsel in both Texas and the state where the child currently lives.
The consequences of proceeding incorrectly in an interstate adoption include more than just a denied application. The Interstate Compact for the Placement of Children (ICPC), which governs interstate adoptions in the U.S., allows for criminal penalties in the event that adoptive parents don't follow the law.
Working with the right lawyer is important —Call our experienced adoption attorneys today (713) 909-7323