One of the very few areas of law in which it is truly a joyous occasion is the process of adoption.
The attorneys at The Mark Law Firm are honored to be chosen to help you through this process, and will use our knowledge and skills to make sure you are aware of the process.
There are various issues that must be considered during the adoption process. Many of the more important issues are as follows
Types of Adoptions
The Mark Law Firm represents parents in domestic private adoptions, assisted adoptions, adult adoptions, second parent adoptions, step – parent adoptions, foster care adoptions, and foreign adoptions. We work with agencies throughout the country to help locate a child which fits your family. We represent single parents, men and women, and same sex patents.
There Are Many Types of Adoptions
- DYFS adoptions: Thousands of children every year are places under DYFS foster care. If you are a foster parent and ready to adopt, the Mark Law Firm can assist you in your desire to adopt a foster child.
- Agency Adoptions: The Mark Law Firm works with agencies throughout the country, and we can help you in your time of need. We can analyze the home study, contracts, and help you finalize your adoption.
- Private Placements: The Mark Law Firm assists parents looking to place their child through a private adoption agency, and we assist parents looking to adopt through a private agency.
- ICPC: The interstate compact placement of children Involves adoptive parents who wish to move child from one state to another. This is a complicated process, and an experienced attorney is necessary to help you make sure that your family is protected.
- Relative adoptions: Frequently, family members of a child adopt for various reasons, including incarceration, death, incapacity or other reasons. The process is difficult, and The Mark Law Firm is here to assist.
- Step Parents: When a family is fortunate enough to have a new marriage or a civil union, a child may become adopted by the stepparent. The Mark Law Firm is here to help in the joyous occasion.
- Foreign Adoptions: When an adoption of a new child from a foreign country occurs, The Mark Law Firm is able to help secure US and State citizenship.
- Gay and Lesbian: Because the laws of the state, and throughout the country, are constantly evolving, you will need to make sure you protect your child’s rights and benefits in this state. These are functions The Mark Law Firm can help you with.
The adoption process can be very challenging, however with a qualified and experienced attorney the process can be made easier. Contact The Mark Law Firm to know what your options are, and schedule your consultation. Contact us or call 908–626–1001.
Biological Parent Rights
The rights of biological parents can be very limited, and are often controlled by the agreement between the biological parent and the adoptive parents. Once the consent for adoption is signed, the biological parents rights cease. The biological parent does have a right to appeal or oppose any set adoption, however, that burden is very high.
In some matters the adoptive parent and biological parent through mutual agreement will outline a set of strict parameters in which the biological parent may have communications with the child throughout the child’s life. It is very important however to make sure these guidelines are defined in writing.
Information Shared with Birth Mother
Information that you consider private, may not be shared with the birth parent. The amount of information you wish to share is up to you and should be agreed upon and defined with the birth parent.
Commonly referred to as an open adoption, allows the parent of the adopted child to openly speak to each other through various forms of communication avenues. For example, when properly set through a set of defined terms and limitations, the biological parent may ask for the right to communicate with a child throughout the child’s life through social media, simple written communication, or scheduled visits.
What is the Process of Adoption?
The adoption process in the state of New Jersey is guided by NJSA 9:3-37. The main purpose behind the statute is to balance the best interest of the child with the rights of the parents.
Adoptions may be placed through a state approved adoption agency. Typically the process begins when the biological mother decides that she is unable to care for the child, and at that point the adoptive parent, fills out an approved application for the consent to adopt. During the process, the approved agency will explain to the biological mother that the consent for adoption is irrevocable. All information that would lead to the identification of the birth parent must not be disclosed.
The adoptive and biological parents then may meet with each other, and communicate before the child is born to determine the parameters of the relationship.
Sometimes, the parents never meet, and the child is accepted into the new family without knowing who the biological parent is. In some arrangements the biological parent will not know the address or telephone number of the adoptive parents. In other situations, it is up to parents to permit to meet with and/or communicate with the adoptive parents. It is whatever you are comfort with.
The approved agency must provide the adoptive parent with all available information relevant to the development and medical history of the child prior to the finalization of the adoption.
Then the agency will file the appropriate documentation with the court, and those documents are sealed, including
The complaint and final judgment of adoption;
- Briefs; and
- All relevant documents.
How Long Does an Adoption Take?
While there is no set limit as to how long an adoption can take, we routinely represent clients in adoptions which take between six months and one year in time.
Cost for Adoption
Most adoptions cost somewhere in the range of $15,000-$30,000. But you must be aware that these costs do not typically include costs for study, advertising, experts, travel and filing fees.