Faqs About Stepparent Adoption

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Below are some frequently asked questions about Stepparent Adoption:

What is stepparent adoption?

Legally adopting your stepchild makes you a parent and gives you the following benefits:

  • The same legal rights as any biological parent
  • Your child can inherit from your estate
  • In the event of divorce, you will have rights to custody and visitation

As a legal adoptive parent, you are also responsible for supporting your child, even if you later divorce.

If you would like to discuss all of the legal implications that accompany stepparent adoption, contact Mills Adoption Law. Bobby Mills has 30 years of experience working as a stepparent adoption lawyer.

What is required for a stepparent to adopt in North Carolina?

North Carolina law requires a stepparent to meet the following requirements before adoption:

  • You must be married to a biological parent of the child
  • You must have lived in the state for six months before you filing
  • A child older than 12 must consent to the adoption
  • You must reside with both your spouse and the child you wish to adopt

In addition, it is likely that an agency will conduct a home visit and a criminal background check.

Do I need to get consent from the child’s other birth parent?

Generally, yes.

Under certain circumstances, the consent of an unwed birth father may not be required.

Consent is not required from a mother or father who fails to file a written objection to the adoption.

Consent is not required when the parental rights of a parent are terminated by a court.

To terminate a parent’s rights, you must prove that:

  • An unwed father failed to establish a relationship with the child.
  • The parent abused or neglected the child.
  • The parent abandoned the child; or
  • The parent filed to pay court ordered child support.

Speaking to an experienced stepparent adoption attorney can make the process smoother. Bobby Mills has over 30 years of experience with adoption law and anticipates issues other lawyers fail to see. He is an adoptions lawyer who puts family first.

Is stepparent adoption necessary?

Every situation is unique. If you are considering stepparent adoption, you should gather all the necessary facts to make your decision. An experienced stepparent adoption attorney at Mills Adoption Law can help and explain all the legal ramifications and procedures that should inform your decision. Mills Adoption Law has the experience to help you through the process. Adoption is a journey, and we will be there every step of the way.

Call us today at (919) 306-2899 or fill out our contact form to schedule a consultation with our adult adoption law firm.

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Professional Associations

Martindale-Hubbell - Preeminent
Academy of Adoption & Assisted Reproduction Attorneys
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AdoptMatch - Approved

Why Should You Choose An Adoption Attorney?

Adoption is a wonderful option for expanding your family, but the laws governing the process are quite complex. Working with an attorney with significant experience in adoption law will help ensure that the adoption process goes smoothly.

An adoption attorney will:


We will provide an unbiased explanation of adoption procedures and develop a legally secure plan tailored to your needs.


We will assess the risks involved, including determining what payments are permissible and ensuring that birth parents are treated fairly and their rights are legally terminated before placement is finalized.


We will clarify your options, if any, for post-placement arrangements with birth parents, making sure your interests and those of the child are served.

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We will explain your rights and adoption laws in your state or refer you to attorneys who practice in other states or internationally.


We will review and negotiate the adoption agency contract to protect your interests.

You Should...


You should contact an attorney as early as possible in the decision-making process.


Learn about the specific types of adoption services the attorney provides. Ask what percentage of the practice is dedicated to adoption and how many adoption proceedings the attorney has handled.


Choose an attorney who is experienced in the type of adoption you are considering.

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Know what the attorney charges, how fees are structured and that you can afford the services.


Ask questions, request references, share your concerns and provide the attorney with all relevant documents. Ask for a written retainer agreement that outlines what the attorney charges, how fees are structured and other details regarding fees and fee payment.

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