The Gift of Family
Season’s Greetings! As we move forward to closing out a historical year, I want to express my gratitude for my health, my family, and my friends. The greatest gift I will receive this holiday season will be the opportunity to spend time and make memories with my honey and my kids. When the 2020 storms raged this year, my family remained my anchor and beacon of light. It seems no coincidence that Guymon Law’s most momentous achievement this year was their involvement in changing legislation to expand stepparents’ ability to adopt their adult stepchildren. Kudos to Kevin Hanger for all his hard work! As a Chandler attorney practicing family law, there is no greater gift than the trust placed in me to be the legal guide in adoption proceedings. To be a participant in legally and formally making a “family” has been, and continues to be, the greatest honor and privilege.
For many, the definition of family includes a stepparent actively raising a child as his or her own. In order to adopt a stepchild, however, you must first terminate the rights of the child’s biological parent – even if they are not identified on the birth certificate. With some exceptions, this can be accomplished by the consent of the known biological parent. However, if the biological parent does not consent or you can not locate the biological parent, you must file an action to terminate their rights based on certain statutory grounds, such as abandonment, and then effectuate service. This is a complicated process and there are various requirements that must be met to obtain an order for termination. But once this action is complete, you can proceed forward with the adoption of a stepchild. Contact our office for more information regarding the adoption of your adult or minor stepchild. There is no greater gift than family, and that’s one thing that 2020, with all its might, cannot change. Our office wishes you and yours a safe, loving, joyful, and prosperous holiday season.