Step Parent Adoption

If you are seeking to adopt your partner’s child please contact us for further information:

  • Telephone: 01606 275673.

Step-parent adoption common questions

I would like my partner to adopt my child.

The first issue that many adults tend to forget is that adoption is about what is best for the child. What the adults want is relevant, but the Court will prioritise the welfare of the child when it makes its decision.

Do I have to be married to my partner to adopt their child?

No. You do not have to be married to adopt the children of your partner.

Do I have to get the other parent’s agreement to the adoption?

If the other parent is the mother: You will need her agreement. A court can dispense with the need for her agreement but there have to be very good reasons for them to do so.

If the other parent is the father and he was married to the child’s mother: You will need his agreement. A court can dispense with the need for his agreement but there will have to be very good reasons for them to do so.

If the other parent is the father and he was not married to the mother but has Parental Responsibility: You will need his agreement. A court can dispense with his agreement but there will have to be very good reasons for them to do so.

Will the other parent have to be involved?

Irrespective of the birth parents legal status the court will require a report to be completed and wherever possible the wishes of both birth parents will be ascertained including what role they might intend to play in the child’s life. Your current relationship with him or her, or the amount of contact they have with the child will not remove the responsibility for finding out their views, and reporting them back to the Court.

Do I need a solicitor?

A solicitor is not normally needed for a step-partner application unless the adoption is opposed or there are complicated issues; but you have the right to have a solicitor if you wish.

Alternatives to adoption

It may be possible for you to acquire parental responsibility for the child by other means than adoption. The options include:

  • Residence Order: this gives you parental responsibility of the child up to the age of 16yrs. (18yrs if the child has disabilities).
  • Parental Responsibility: This can be acquired through agreement or through a Parental Responsibility Order.