There are many instances where a child has an absent biological parent (whether it’s due to their death, incarceration, abuse allegations or other reasons). When that happens, a stepparent may be eligible to adopt.
While many people assume that adoption is beneficial for a child because it formalizes the family bond and gives them the assurance that only a two-parent household can provide, there are many other ways it helps the stepchild. There are even more ways in which adoption benefits the stepparent.
Additional ways in which adoption benefits both you and your stepchildren
If you love your stepchild, you want your bonds to last forever. Unfortunately, if something happens to your spouse (your stepchild’s biological parent), you could easily lose custody of your stepchild to another biological relative — and you may not even get visitation.
Blended families are the norm nowadays. You and your spouse may share biological children. Then, you might have a stepchild for whom only one of you can make decisions. It can be confusing for your children, their doctors and the school that you can’t lawfully make decisions for all your kids. Adoption can provide you with a legal right to do this.
Adopting your stepchild also gives them inheritance rights and benefit rights if something should happen to you, which is an important safety net.
Where to turn for more information about stepparent adoptions
There are many benefits associated with pursuing a stepparent adoption that extend well beyond the legal rights it bestows on you and logistical concerns it helps alleviate for your stepchild.
A family law attorney can go over the steps you’ll need to take to pursue a stepparent adoption if you decide that’s the right choice for you.