Deciding to become a parent is an exciting decision that will yield many rewards. Adopting a child is a life-changing experience that will undoubtedly bring many joyous moments to your life, which will lead to a lifetime of wonderful memories. While exciting, adopting a child can also be stressful because of the law and the procedural formalities. Further, adoption can be costly. Making mistakes in the process can increase the financial cost and may also add unneeded emotional distress. At Marshall & Taylor PLLC, we have helped many families with the adoption process over the years. We understand that while adopting can reap many great rewards, it can also be a challenge to go through the overwhelming and tedious legal process alone. Let us help you bring the joy of life, and another family member, into your home.
The team at Marshall & Taylor PLLC has extensive experience in family law. We are highly awarded and are held in great esteem by our peers and clients. Founding partner, Jefferey E. Marshall, is a Board Certified Family Law Specialist. This means he has met rigorous standards set by the North Carolina Bar that include outstanding service to the public, passing a specialized written examine, receiving high praise from his peers, and showing that he has extensive knowledge and skill in family law. Having been tested in and out of court, we are dedicated to the people we serve, always working to get you the results you want.
Adoption, while joyous, can also be stressful. Focus on the joy and allow the proven team of Raleigh adoption attorneys at Marshall & Taylor PLLC deal with the stresses. We are compassionate and understanding. At Marshall & Taylor PLLC, we want to help you welcome your family’s addition home. Call us today at (919) 833-1040 for a consultation.
Types of Adoption
There are many things to consider when adopting. For example, what type of adoption are you seeking? What a family is looking for in an adoption can vary, and each family’s needs will be different based on their particular set of circumstances. At Marshall & Taylor PLLC we can help with a variety of adoption processes including
For each of these types of adoption, the legal process can be different and present unique legal and procedural challenges. Knowing how to navigate the legal process can be difficult. During a time when you are preparing to bring a new family member into your home, you should not have to worry about the legal process of adoption, you should be celebrating the new shape your family is taking. That is why we, at Marshall & Taylor PLLC, are here to help with the technicalities.
Adoption Facts and Statistics
People adopt for a variety of reasons, as each individual family’s needs vary. Adoption touches the lives of many Americans in a very significant fashion. A survey found that 58% of Americans know someone who has been adopted. Data shows that in the United Sates, 2% of families have an adopted family member, while another one-third of families have considered adoption.
Families may adopt children, from infants to teens, and may even adopt adults. Each year, roughly 135,000 children are adopted by American families, with one out of every 25 families having adopted. The majority of children adopted come from the United States foster care system. In the United States, there are over 100,000 children in the foster care system waiting to be adopted, with over half of these kids being six years old or older.
In North Carolina, the number of children adopted with some public welfare agency involved varies from year to year but has consistently been over 1,100 adoptions per year since 2005, with there being 1,164 children adopted in 2014. Of those adopted, 66.2% were adopted by their foster parents, and another 28.8% were adopted by a family member. The number of child adoptions without involvement from public welfare agency in North Carolina in 2016 was 152. Of those adopted 50.7% were male and 49.3% were female.
There are some requirements to being able to adopt a child in North Carolina. For example, you must be 18 years or older to adopt a child. However, you may adopt a child whether you are married, divorced, widowed, or single. Whether you rent or own your home is inconsequential, as long as you have a stable living environment. When adopting a child, having parenting experience is not a requirement, but it is okay if you already have children in your home.
While there are no recorded statistics on the number of couples wanting to adopted, experts estimate that around two million couples are waiting to adopt. This means that for each child placed, there are 36 couples waiting to adopt. The length of time it will take for an adoption will vary depending on what type of adoption families are seeking. For those looking to adopt a healthy infant, the wait can be anywhere from two to seven years. This may be, in part, because only 4% of women with unwanted pregnancies place their babies for adoption. If you are looking to adopt, get the help of the experienced attorneys at Marshall & Taylor PLLC to help move you through the process.
North Carolina Adoption – Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
At Marshall & Taylor PLLC, our Raleigh adoption lawyers get many questions from clients regarding the adoption process in North Carolina. Below are several of the most commonly asked questions. We hope you find our answers useful. Please don’t hesitate to contact us at (919) 833-1040 if you have further questions regarding adoption in North Carolina.
Should I hire an adoption lawyer?
Adoption is governed by statute. The statutory procedures outlined in Chapter 48 of the North Carolina General Statutes must be adhered to in order to complete an adoption. These laws are complicated. Working with a skilled and experienced North Carolina adoption lawyer can help ensure that your adoption goes as smoothly as possible.
A lawyer can explain your legal rights and the adoption process in a manner that is easy to understand. It’s important that you hire a lawyer as soon as possible in the adoption process.
Who can adopt in North Carolina?
While the North Carolina adoption process is complicated, the basic eligibility requirements are straightforward. Any adult 18 or older may be eligible to adopt a child in North Carolina. You do not have to be married to adopt. You also do not need to meet a minimum income threshold. That gain, not every applicant gets approved for adoption. Gaining approval can be challenging, depending on the circumstances. For example, all prospective adoptive parents have to submit to a background check and complete a home study.
What is a home study?
In most North Carolina adoption cases, a home study is required to provide the court with the information they need to approve the adoption. The home study also proves your ability to parent an adopted child. The home study addresses your medical history, employment history, your friends and family, the safety of your home, and your criminal background, if applicable.
Before parents can be approved for adoption, they must show that they can provide a safe and healthy environment for the child. Typically, a social worker will be assigned to your case and conduct an in-depth assessment of you and your home.
Adoption home studies can be stressful. However, a lawyer can help make the process go smoother. If you have any questions or concerns about your home study, the experienced Raleigh adoption attorneys at Marshall & Taylor PLLC can help you to prepare and understand what to expect.
What are the legal requirements to finalize the adoption?
After an adoption petition is filed, the court will order a post-placement study to determine whether the placement is in the child’s best interests. The post-placement study, which is a follow-up to the home study, involves interviews with the adoptive parents, as well as an interview that includes the adopted child in order to observe their relationship with the adopted parents. The post-placement report consists of a recommendation concerning the granting of the adoption petition. If the post-placement study is favorable, the adoption may be finalized in a North Carolina court.
Talk to an Adoption Attorney in Raleigh
The decision to adopt a child or adult can be one of the most important decisions you will make in your life. Unfortunately, the legal processes that adopting parents need to work through can be exceedingly complex and they may cause significant delays in the adoption process for some families. It may be in your best interests to partner with an attorney who can help you ensure that your adoption runs as smoothly as possible.
If you are considering adoption in any form, the assistance of one of our understanding and skilled lawyers from Marshall & Taylor PLLC, can make the process significantly less complicated. Find out how we can help you add to your family by calling (919) 833-1040 today.