Uniformity of law is something many consider to be a good thing. It can be a difficult thing to achieve, though. Every state can make its own laws on any given issue and it’s not unusual to find that statutes on the same subject differ from state to state.
In the state of Texas, adoption law says that the process is open to just about any adult. There is a specific restriction that requires the consent of the adoptee child if he or she is 12 years old or older. But it is also true that getting an adoption approved can sometimes hinge on the particular judge assigned to the case.
Attorneys with skill in the practice of family law have the advantage of experience. They get to know how judges in various jurisdictions make their decisions when faced with certain factors. An attorney’s understanding of these things can be crucial as adoptive parents work to see their vision of family become real.
There are different routes to adopting a child. What they all have in common is that they must comply with the law and be approved by an adoption court. Below are some of the methods most commonly used.
- Working with an agency. These can be private or public. All agencies are required to be licensed by the state.
- Independent adoption. This isn’t allowed by all states, and because of the very sensitive nature of the undertaking and the rights of many individuals intersect, working with an attorney is always wise.
- Identified adoption. This method typically involves adoptive parents finding a prospective mother who seeks to give up her child. They then work through an agency to finalize matters.
- International adoption. Complications can abound in this form of adoption. Laws of the child’s homeland and the state must be met. Compliance with federal immigration law is necessary, too. The Hague Adoption Convention adds yet another layer of federal oversight that involves the State Department.
- Same-sex couple adoptions. Same-sex marriage may be legal, but that level of equality doesn’t always translate across all elements of family law. For some it could mean having to clear some legal hurdles.
Adoptions can also involve close relatives and even adults. Each requires taking steps to be sure the law has been followed.