California Stepparent Adoption Without The Biological Parents Consent?
You may be wondering whether you can have your spouse adopt your child without the biological parent’s consent. In California, in order to do a stepparent adoption, the absent parent must have his or her parental rights terminated in order for the step parent adoption to move forward. The absent parent’s rights can be terminated by consent or by court order.
1) Termination of parental rights by consent
In some cases the absent parent is willing to consent to the adoption of the child by your spouse. If that is the case, that is the easiest scenario to get the stepparent adoption finalized.
2) Termination of parental rights via court order
If the biological parent will not consent to your stepparent adoption you will have to ask the court for an Order terminating their parental rights.
In most cases in order to get the Judge to terminate the parental rights of the father you will need to be able to prove a few things (ex. best interests of the child for the adoption to go forward, absent parent has no relationship with the child, absent parent has not supported the child (ex., child support, gifts etc).
This can vary depending on whether the father is a putative father or a presumed father.
So, the short answer is you MAY BE ABLE TO proceed with a stepparent adoption without the biological parent's consent.
However, there are a lot of rules and procedures that you have to follow in order to get your stepparent adoption approved. Don’t try to navigate these legal waters alone. If you would like to explore your options for stepparent adoption, give our office a call at (818) 714-2200 or click here to schedule a call.