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Step Parent Adoption

10 November 2021

Sharon McKie

Child watering plants

Step Parent Adoption.

There are many blended families living in the UK with over 1.5 million children living with a step family.   

Some couples make the decision to look into step parent adoption. This may be to give a child a sense of stability and belonging. It may be that they no longer have a relationship with their natural parent.  Deciding to adopt a step child has to be considered very carefully. If you think it is the right decision for your family, you may need support with the legal process.

You need to give your Local Authority written notice at least 3 months before applying to the court. They will appoint a social worker and start the assessment process which can take many months. You will have to be eligible to apply and also inform the non-resident parent of the child concerned.  The child must be under 18 years and their wishes and feelings are also important so speak to them beforehand. You will then apply for an adoption order through the Family Court and once granted you will receive an adoption certificate which replaces the birth certificate.

There are alternatives to adoption such as obtaining a Parental Responsibility agreement or order. It may be possible to obtain a Special Guardianship Order or a Child Arrangements Order. If the issue is about the child’s surname, it may be possible to change the name.

Taylor Bracewell appreciates that this can be a stressful time and we are here to support you with the legal process from start to finish. Please contact us on 01302 341414