When you are considering adopting a child, we know you are very excited about the prospect of adding to your family. However, there are numerous legal matters which must be addressed. Adoptions may be open, where the adoptive and birth parents know each other, or closed where they are strangers. Either way, there are still legal documents which must be drawn up to ensure the legality of the process. One of the first steps in the adoption process is the termination of parental rights.
Parental Rights Termination in Texas
Prior to an adoption taking place, the termination of parental rights is necessary. This may be done on a voluntary basis, when the birth parents of the child consent to the adoption. In some cases, this process is involuntary, typically occurring when one, or both birth parents object to the termination of their rights. In these cases, oftentimes Texas Department of Family and Protective Services is involved in the process.
It is important to be aware that involuntary termination of rights is a process that requires the filing of a lawsuit. To demonstrate to the court that this is necessary, it is typically necessary to prove:
- The child’s safety and stability are at risk unless parental rights are terminated
- The adoption that is pending is in the best interest of the child
- There are grounds for termination of parental rights
Parental rights may also be requested terminated by one parent, for example, if one parent has abandoned the family, the child was subjected to abuse by one parent, or for other reasons the court may deem appropriate.
Whether you have planned an adoption with a birth family to adopt a child, or you are working through an agency, you should have an attorney who understands Texas adoptions by your side through the process. We understand you probably have many questions and we are here to help.
Contact Mary Lois Spain-Sipes, Attorney at Law’s, Decatur, Texas office if you need assistance with an adoption in North Texas. We provide adoption legal help in Denton, Montague, Jack, Wise, and Tarrant County.