Q: VA stepparent adoption: child 14 never knew bio dad. No support no visitation no contact 14yrs can stepparent adopt?
Bio dad not on birth certificate. No paternity, not on father registry. How can prove abandonment and not need bio signature? Don't want to contact
A: Va. Code § 63.2-1241. Adoption of child by spouse of birth or adoptive parent.
Stepparent petitions for adoption. The bio parent/spouse joins the petition to indicate their consent.
Va. Code § 63.2-1202. Parental, or agency, consent required; exceptions.
Consent is required "3. By the child if he is 14 years of age or older, unless the circuit court finds that the best interests of the child will be served by not requiring such consent."
"H. No consent shall be required of a birth parent who, without just cause, has neither visited nor contacted the child for a period of six months immediately prior to the filing of the petition for adoption or the filing of a petition to accept consent to an adoption. The prospective adoptive parent(s) shall establish by clear and convincing evidence that the birth parent(s), without just cause, has neither visited nor contacted the child for a period of six months immediately prior to the filing of the petition for adoption or the filing of a petition to accept consent to an adoption. This provision shall not infringe upon the birth parent's right to be noticed and heard on the allegation of abandonment. For purposes of this section, the payment of child support, in the absence of other contact with the child, shall not be considered contact."
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