Bearing a child is one of the most exciting milestones of a couple’s life. Raising one is no easy task either, especially if both parents are undergoing a divorce. Hiring divorce lawyers is only one of the many steps to the complicated divorce process. Child support lawyers and spousal support lawyers may also be needed to deal with child support and custody, and alimony, respectively.
But there are instances wherein either parent is not qualified for child custody. Or in the worse cases, both parents have died due to an unfortunate accident and there is no direct relative to take in the orphaned child.
In such cases, the child can be adopted by a close friend. There are two ways to adopt a child. One is by going to an adoption agency. Another is by a process called an independent adoption.
What to consider in adopting a child by a close friend
There are valid reasons that can determine both parents’ incapacity to take care of a child. For example, both parents might be incarcerated or have died in an accident. Relatives usually take over on the custody of a child. But it may not always be the case.
For example, the parents might consider a close friend to adopt their child. Perhaps the parents think that that friend can provide the best living environment for the child. It is good news if the close friend is more than willing to adopt the child. However, there are some things to consider before a friend can adopt the child.
The friend should be someone that the parents trust.
If the parent is considering the child adopted by a close friend, it is important that he or she is a trusted one. The close friend should also undergo a thorough screening process before he or she is able to adopt the child. Family lawyers can also help you with queries regarding this concern.
You should be willing to have your child adopted by a non-relative.
Wanting a dear friend to adopt your child is different from a friend wanting to adopt your child. This is a major decision that parents may have to face. Divorcing couples may also face this concern, too. They can consult divorce lawyers regarding this as well.
You should be prepared with the possible changes you and your friend’s relationship might go through after the adoption process.
The question is whether you are ready to see your child and adoptive family on a regular basis. Having a child adopted by a close friend can be a wise decision for the sake of the child. But then, it may also hurt seeing your own child happy with his/her adoptive family.
Advantages of child adoption by a close friend
Independent adoption allows both birth and adoptive parents to be in control of the adoption process. However, there are also pros and cons of adopting straight from birth parents.
One advantage of independent adoption is the ease of establishing a close and personal relationship with the adoptive parent and vice versa. And in many cases, many birth and adoptive parents form a positive relationship with each other.
Independent adoption is also faster unlike undergoing the adoption process through an agency. Plus, it is less expensive to adopt directly than adopting through an agency.
What about the disadvantages?
However, not all states allow independent adoption. There are also some states that impose certain restrictions such as the amount of money given to the birth mother for medical expenses.
There is also less guidance and counseling during an independent adoption. Some states also require counseling before the birth parents are able to proceed with the adoption process. Some states do not allow direct adoption including North Dakota and Connecticut.
What to expect when you let a dear friend adopt your child
Child adoption may vary depending on the birth family’s situation. Both parents may not be available or capable of taking care of their children. Or it can be that the parents and a close friend have a mutual agreement to adopt the child. If you are in this situation, you can expect the following.
- It will be an emotional roller-coaster ride. That is why you should be 100 percent sure of your decision.
- Having your child adopted by a non-relative is a leap of faith. You should trust that friend to give a good life the child deserves.
- It is also a good idea to consult family lawyers regarding this concern. If you are undergoing a divorce, it is also a good idea to consult the best divorce lawyers in Fairfax VA for divorce and family legal concerns.