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Georgia Adoption Eligibility Laws

Adoption offers children-in-need a chance to be taken in by parents who would like to confer all the rights of a family upon them. Legally, adoption is defined as follows:

Adoption is the legal process pursuant to state statute in which a child's legal rights and duties toward his natural parents are terminated and similar rights and duties toward his adoptive parents are substituted.

To complete an adoption in Georgia you have to follow certain laws and fulfill certain eligibilities.

Under Georgia Code Section 19-8-3, any adult person may petition to adopt a child, as long as the petitioner is at least 25 years of age, or, is living with his or her spouse. Further, the petitioner must be at least ten years older than the child. The prospective adoptive parent also has to be a resident of Georgia for at least six months before the petition.

Equally importantly, prospective parent must be “financially, physically, and mentally able to have permanent custody of the child. One important consideration in the law is that if the person seeking to adopt a child in Georgia is married, the petition must be filed in name of both spouses.

This rule doesn’t hold, however, if the child is the stepchild of the party seeking to adopt. In that case the petition has to be filed by the stepparent alone. Keep in mind that Georgia Code Section 19-8-3 is the starting but not the ending point, of the adoption process.

If you are trying to confirm whether you fulfill the eligibility to do adopt in Georgia, please consult with a family law attorney.

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