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Child Adoption Lawyer in Colorado

Adoption is an exciting and enriching experience, but if you’re considering adoption, you are also likely to have a considerable number of questions on your mind. Fortunately, the best lawyer can help you navigate the legal process of adoption in accordance with Colorado law. In fact, if you’re ready to discuss the possibility of adoption, it’s in your best interest to find the right adoption attorney near you.

General Adoption Requirements in Colorado

All states have requirements for potential parents to adopt. Colorado’s requirements are relatively simple and include:

  1. In Colorado, you must be at least 21 years old to adopt a child. While there is no upper age limit on the books, many adoption professionals impose an upper limit of about 50.
  2. You must not have a criminal history of the following: child abuse or neglect, domestic abuse or violence, any crimes involving a minor, any violent or sexual crimes, felony physical assault or battery, or a felony drug-related conviction within the past five years

Your Aurora adoption lawyers can help you increase your chances of being eligible to adopt and help guide you in the process.

What is Adoption?  

Adoption is a legal process in which the parental rights of both a child’s biological parents are terminated and awarded to the child’s adoptive parents (or parent). Adoption affords the adoptive parent all the same legal rights and responsibilities that the biological parents originally had.

How is Adoption Different from Legal Custody or Guardianship?

Adoption differs from both legal custody and guardianship in all the following primary ways:

  1. Adoption permanently ends the parental rights and responsibilities of the biological parents.
  2. While guardianship transfers the custody and care of the child to someone other than the birth parents, it does not completely sever the birth parent’s legal rights and responsibilities.
  3. A legal custodian takes care of the child in lieu of the biological parents, and while a legal custodian has considerable legal rights and responsibilities in relation to the child, he or she is less likely than a guardian to receive government services in the process.

The Goals of The Colorado Adoption System

The Colorado Department of Human Services endeavors to keep children with their birth families if at all possible. Sometimes, however, this simply isn’t possible or isn’t in the child’s best interests. Barring this, they seek adoptive families for children who are funneling through the foster care network.

Colorado Is an Adoption Agency State

The State of Colorado is an agency state, and this means that, in order to adopt, you will need to use either a private child placement agency or use one of the county’s child placement agencies. If you are considering adopting an older child, using a county agency is a great way to go, but if you have your heart set on adopting a baby or a very young child, you should work with a reputable private agency – under the direct guidance of your experienced adoption attorney.

Depending on the public or private agency you are using to complete your adoption, there might be additional requirements. By working with Aurora adoption attorneys, you can ensure that you understand and meet these requirements. These requirements might include:

  1. A home study is performed by a social worker to ensure that the home is safe and the potential parents are fit
  2. Financial checks that look for economic stability and capability; however, you don’t have to be wealthy to adopt a child
  3. Orientation or training classes to ensure you are prepared for the adoption process and parenthood
  4. Medical histories for both physical and mental health to ensure the parents are stable and physically able to care for a child
  5. Waiting periods that are required by law between the time the child is in the home and the adoption is finalized

The Adoption Process in Colorado

The adoption process in every state – including Colorado – tends to be long and arduous. After all, the authorities are preparing to entrust you with the life, well-being, and happiness of a child, and that is a massive responsibility. There are three types of adoption available in Colorado, including:

  1. Adoptions through the foster care system
  2. Private domestic adoptions
  3. International adoptions

The majority of adoptions in the United States funnel through the foster care system.

The Adoption Home Study (Family Assessment)

In order to adopt in Colorado, the prospective adoptive parents are required to participate in a family assessment, which is sometimes called a home study.  The purpose of this home study is to ensure that you and your spouse (if you’re adopting as a couple) are emotionally, financially, and physically capable of and prepared to adopt and raise a child. Your home study will consist of both extensive document submissions and an in-home visit from your appointed home-study worker, who will do all the following:

  • Assess the suitability of your home
  • Evaluate your suitability as adoptive parents
  • Educate you about and prepare you for adoption

While the home study process is intense, if it results in you adopting a bouncing bundle of joy, it will be more than worth the effort.

Can Single Parents Adopt in Colorado?

You do not have to be married in order to adopt in Colorado, but if you are married, you and your spouse must adopt together. LGBTQ couples are also welcome to adopt in the state.

Duration of The Adoption Process

Following your home study, which can take about six months to complete, you can expect a six-month waiting period after you’ve taken custody of the child you’re adopting. In other words, the adoption process can be quite lengthy.

What Do Adoption Lawyers Do?

Adoption is a very challenging legal matter, and having the best adoption lawyer on your side can make the difference between a smooth, successful adoption process and one that is not. Your compassionate adoption lawyer will take on all the following important tasks:

  1. Exactingly preparing the necessary paperwork
  2. Providing you with ongoing and well-informed legal counsel and support
  3. Ensuring you meet all your contractual obligations
  4. Skillfully negotiating the terms and conditions of the adoption
  5. Handling any legal disputes that arise
  6. Attending all court appearances with you

Contact an Experienced Aurora Adoption Attorney Near You

If you are excited about adoption, the Aurora adoption attorneys at CNL Law Firm, PLLC, are excited to help you travel the often-complicated path toward adoption and future Estate Planning. We are well-versed in the adoption process, and we can help make your adoption dreams come true. Our experienced legal team is here for you, so please don’t hesitate to contact us online or call us at (720) 370-2171 for more information today.

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