Sep 6, 2018 | Family Law

There are many children in the Rockford, Illinois, area who live with one of their biological parents and a stepparent. When the other biological parent is capable and involved in the child‘s life, then a stepparent must remain content to be the best role model for the child that they can be. In some cases, though, a child may have a non-existent or very weak relationship with their natural mother or father, in which case the stepparent may wish to adopt the child.

An adoption will make the child’s stepparent a legal parent over the child, while the biological parent to whom the stepparent is married will remain the other legal parent for the child. A stepparent should be aware that, upon adoption, they will gain all the legal rights and responsibilities of a parent.

The child’s biological parent must formally consent to the adoption because the adoption will terminate their rights regarding the child. Without consent, it is possible for the adoption to proceed but it must be shown that the biological parent abused the child, abandoned the child or just did not do enough to meet the child’s basic needs. Isolated incidents of bad parenting are not enough to terminate a parent’s rights.

Stepparent adoptions are often a great way to make a child feel at home in their family, but they can be complicated situations. A family law attorney in the Rockford area can be valuable to stepparents in the Rockford area who are interested in adoption.