Guiding Families Through The Adoption Process

At Huffman Butler & Mason, PLLC, we understand that adding a member to your family can be complicated. Our skilled adoption lawyers are here to make the process run as smoothly as possible. Whether you are a birth mother, new parent, stepparent or grandparent, we protect your best interests.

Understanding Adoption

Adoption is the legal process by which someone other than a child's biological parents assumes legal responsibility for the child. Once the adoption is finalized, the child is considered a blood relative of the adoptive parent and the relationship between the biological parents and the child are severed.

When most people hear the word adoption, they think of a birth mother giving up her child for adoption to a couple seeking a child. However, adoptions can take many forms. Our family law firm routinely handles relative and step-parent adoptions, including by aunts, uncles and grandparents.

Consent From The Biological Parent

The consent of the biological parents is generally required, though several key exceptions exist. For instance, absentee parents who have not spent time with the child or paid child support need not give permission. The other common exception is when parental rights are terminated by order, often at the request of the Arkansas or Tennessee state governments.

Why You Need An Attorney In Your Corner

Adoption can be a complicated legal process, even when it is not contested. A knowledgeable and caring adoption lawyer can walk you through the steps and answer any questions that you may have along the way. The typical adoption involves the following key steps:

  • Petition for adoption - The person adopting a child must file a petition with the clerk of the court
  • Consent or waiver of consent - The adoption proceeds more smoothly if the natural mother and father consent to it. However, the court may decide it is not required if their parental rights have already been terminated
  • Home study - States often require investigation of the suitability of the petitioner, which is conducted by a child welfare agency, or that a social worker checks the suitability of the home. This study can be waived for adoptions by a relative
  • Hearing and placement - If the court concludes that the adoption requirements have been met and that adoption is in the child's best interests, the court will order the adoption

Call Our Legal Team For Your Adoption Needs

Make sure everything goes as planned by hiring an experienced adoption lawyer. At Huffman Butler & Mason, PLLC, we offer comprehensive adoption services. For a free initial consultation, call 901-410-0689 or book an appointment on our online scheduler.