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Pennsylvania Adoption Questions & Answers

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Adoption for Pennsylvania on

Q: My sons biological mom has not been in his life since he was 3 months old.

Can I petition the court to terminate her rights so my current wife can adopt him.

Kathryn Hilbush answered on May 26, 2019

In PA you can. Consult with an expereinced family law attorney in the county where you reside.

1 Answer | Asked in Adoption and Family Law for Pennsylvania on

Q: My husband is adopting my children, bio father deceased. He did the 3 background checks. Do I have to do them as well?

I had to do the same checks for my job, can I use those if I need to do the checks?

Kathryn Hilbush answered on Apr 19, 2019

If you're referring to the state police checks, no, because you're not the one adopting the children. Your husband, their stepfather, is.

1 Answer | Asked in Adoption and Family Law for Pennsylvania on

Q: Can I adopt my fiancés daughter in the state of Pa? And how hard will it be to do so? Any advice on how to get started?

I have been with my fiancé for almost 3 years. He has Sole and Physical custody of his daughter. The Birth Mother has been deemed an unfit mother by a judge in the past. She is continuously in and out of jail for drugs and theft. Her other child is not in her care as well, living with the... Read more »

Cary B. Hall answered on Apr 12, 2019

Yes -- but you'll have to file a petition to involuntarily terminate birth mother's parental rights at the same time. If birth mother hasn't had any contact at all with the child within the past 6 months, your fiance will have grounds to terminate birth mother's parental rights.

Contact...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Adoption and Family Law for Pennsylvania on

Q: Adopt my ex girlfriends son

My ex girlfriend wants me to adopt her son from a previous relationship. We are not together nor do I intend to be as she is muniputive and that’s why we are no longer together . Since I care for this child and his well being if I do legally adopt him can she collect support from me ? I feel like... Read more »

Cary B. Hall answered on Nov 28, 2018

Yes - if you adopt the child, you become as responsible financially for him as his biological father would be. My suggestion, then, is to be like a "big brother" to the kid if you want to support him, but *don't* adopt him if you have no new family unit and long-term plans with his mother.... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Adoption for Pennsylvania on

Q: What questions should I ask my lawyer about adult adoption?

I am 28 and asked my step-father to adopt me. I am meeting with the lawyer tomorrow and just want to know what questions to ask him.

I live in dauphin county PA but have had no luck finding forms or anything

Kathryn Hilbush answered on Nov 9, 2018

Just ask the lawyer what the procedure is and what the costs will be. If the attorney is knowledgeable, he/she will be able to explain everything to you and answer the questions that will come to mind. If the lawyer can't fill in all the blanks, you may want to consult with another one. One thing... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Adoption for Pennsylvania on

Q: we have custody of my cousin kids and was thinking of adoption. could you tell me the pros and cons of it.

they have been in our care for 2 years and the parents haven't done what they are suppose to do. we do not have a casework the case was closed a year ago. any information would be helpful

Kathryn Hilbush answered on Oct 23, 2018

It's not really possible to tell you the pros and cons about adopting these children. That's for you to decide, but it's really not all that hard to figure out. Adopting them would make them your children in every sense of the word except biologically, with all the joys, responsibilities, and... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Adoption for Pennsylvania on

Q: As a birth mom how often can I request money for food expenses

I live in Pennsylvania and adoptive parents live in Virginia

Cary B. Hall answered on Oct 5, 2018

I'm afraid I don't understand your question. Is your child born, and another Virginia couple is adopting your child? Are you in the middle of adoption proceedings either here in Pennsylvania, or in Virginia?

I suggest you contact whoever is brokering the adoption, and pose your question...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Adoption, Child Custody and Family Law for Pennsylvania on

Q: My x girlfriend is pregnant with my child. Can she offer our child up for adoption if I’m willing to raise our child?

She told me that she terminated the pregnancy and I have reason to believe she is still pregnant. She will not return any calls. I don’t want my child to be offered for adoption.

Kathryn Hilbush answered on Sep 6, 2018

The law requires the biological father's rights to be terminated, either voluntarily or involuntarily, before the child can be placed for adoption. Obviously then the question arises - what if she says she doesn't know who the father is? Good point. I'd try to keep eyes on her discreetly to see if... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Adoption for Pennsylvania on

Q: We have custody of our grandchild, now 5. Can we adopt w/o lawyer and how?

Our daughter and her boyfriend at the time, were potheads (still are) and we were given custody. My daughter was never a mom, she was always more interested in getting high. We were living in NY at the time and the dad still does, although he hasnt been in the picture for more that 3 years. My... Read more »

Kathryn Hilbush answered on Aug 20, 2018

Well, the clerk of courts was right - you can try to do this on your own and hope, no pray, that you get it right. You really should contact an attorney. I'm not sure what state you're in but in PA, you may have a problem unless both parents willingly terminate their parental rights to allow the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Adoption, Family Law and Child Custody for Pennsylvania on

Q: I had my children out of wedlock fathers is on the birth certificate and also singed the. Paternity. Does he have rights

e also hasn’t been in their lives for over 5 years, the last time he asked to see them was August 1 2014 or 2015, he doesn’t pay his court order support, and now after 5 years and that he’s “clean” he thinks he come right back into their lives... do I have to let him, I have a man that... Read more »

Cary B. Hall answered on Aug 12, 2018

Yes, he has parental rights . . . unless and until a court terminates them. You can certainly file a petition asking the court to involuntarily terminate his parental rights -- and at the same time, your new man can file a petition to adopt the children. In fact, a court will NOT terminate a... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Adoption, Child Custody and Family Law for Pennsylvania on

Q: Can a child decide which caretaker they want to live with?

We have taken care of my Husbands biological niece for the last 6 years, no child support or such. Took care of medical, education, activities, finances. All through notarized agreement/ Affidavit .Mom has been back in the state for the last 3, taking child on weekends at times. Very minimal... Read more »

Kathryn Hilbush answered on Aug 12, 2018

One of the factors in a custody case is the child's preference but that's only one of 16 factors. I suggest that you consult with an experienced family law attorney in your area about your rights and options at this point.

1 Answer | Asked in Adoption and Car Accidents for Pennsylvania on

Q: I had my children out of wedlock fathers is on the birth certificate and also singed the. Paternity. Does he have rig

He also hasn’t been in their lives for over 5 years, the last time he asked to see them was August 1 2014 or 2015, he doesn’t pay his court order support, and now after 5 years and that he’s “clean” he thinks he come right back into their lives... do I have to let him, I have a man that... Read more »

Kathryn Hilbush answered on Aug 11, 2018

You may have waited too long. One of the ways to demonstrate to the court that a parent's rights should be terminated is to show that, for a period of at least six months immediately preceding the filing of the petition, there was no performance of parental duties, including contacting the child.... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Adoption, Child Custody and Family Law for Pennsylvania on

Q: ive had custody of my nieces since 2009 after my sister died. Can i change their last name? and can i adopt them?

i had custody of my oldest niece since 2009 before she died which was in 2011 i then obtain custody of my other niece. what are my legal rights to change their last name? and rights to adopt? when all this occurred i was living in NJ now i live in PA...Their father isnt in the picture anymore. i... Read more »

Kathryn Hilbush answered on Aug 10, 2018

Where is their father? In order to adopt them you'd have to have his parental rights terminated and possibly go through a home study. To change their surname only, you'd still probably be required to notify him of your intention. I suggest that you contact a local attorney experienced in adoptions... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Adoption, Child Custody and Child Support for Pennsylvania on

Q: If couple has 3 kids that go up for adoption - behind on child support. They have newborn.. Can they legally keep it?

CPS took kids away and they went to foster...child support hasn't been paid in months. Couple just had a newborn and plans to keep it - can they legally? Should be reported? This is woman's 7th child - she no longer has custody of any others...

Cary B. Hall answered on Aug 9, 2018

Until and unless a court terminates parental rights, biological parents retain their parental rights to their children -- regardless of the past. Whether anyone reports the parents to child protective services is nobody's business but their own.

Hope this helps.

1 Answer | Asked in Adoption and Child Custody for Pennsylvania on

Q: My ex was incarcerated three years ago had the baby in jail don’t know were she’s at need help... my name isAaron

Kathryn Hilbush answered on Aug 8, 2018

Hi, Aaron. Not trying to be smart but it sounds like you need a private investigator more than an attorney right now. Try using one or more of those paid internet people search engines. If you know what county she committed her jailable offense in, you may be able to find an old address on that... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Adoption, Civil Litigation and Social Security for Pennsylvania on

Q: My grandfather, who is also my adoptive parent is refusing to give me my documentation.

I have repeatedly asked for my birth certificate and my social security card. I am 20 years old, live on my own, and am not allowed on his property, so retrieving it myself isn't an option. The only reason he is giving me is that I "have to turn from my sinful ways" i.e. leave my fiancee, and our... Read more »

Cary B. Hall answered on Jun 26, 2018

You could go to the local police station in his neighborhood, explain the situation and ask for police assistance. Don't go in with an attitude; just go in, tell them you don't know what to do or where to turn, and ask them for their help. They may tell you to go pound sand . . . or they may be... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Adoption, Family Law and Immigration Law for Pennsylvania on

Q: How to adopt a now adult step child?

My step father (a legal immigrant whom has a green card) of 28 years, id like to adopt me. I just like him to legally be my "dad" because he is the only father i know and we have been very close my whole life. How to go sbout and what steps to take.

Cary B. Hall answered on Jun 15, 2018

Your situation is not uncommon, and it's great that you both would take this formal action to solidify your relationship. Often your local court of common pleas (the big courthouse in your county seat) has forms that you can obtain and use as a guide. Contact the "Prothonotary" of your local... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Adoption for Pennsylvania on

Q: Where can I find forms for adopting a adult

Cary B. Hall answered on Jun 11, 2018

Have you tried the Prothonotary's Office in the Court of Common Pleas for Allegheny County? They may even have some forms online for your use. Try the Orphans' Court there as well. Best of luck to you.

1 Answer | Asked in Adoption for Pennsylvania on

Q: Where can I find forms for adopting a adult

Cary B. Hall answered on Jun 11, 2018

Have you tried the Prothonotary's Office in the Court of Common Pleas for Allegheny County? They may even have some forms online for your use. Try the Orphans' Court there as well. Best of luck to you.

1 Answer | Asked in Adoption and Family Law for Pennsylvania on

Q: Hi, How can I terminate the rights of my children’s father? My new husband would like to adopt.

Their bio dad hasn’t seen them in almost 4 years and when he decides to it’s far and few between the last. My daughter is 15 and asked if my husband can adopt her and her brother. He has been raising them for 8 years.

Kathryn Hilbush answered on May 21, 2018

The children's bio dad can voluntarily agree to terminate his parental rights or you can file with the court to have them involutarily terminate. The termination and adoption procedures are complicated and paper intensive so I suggest that you consult with an experienced family law attorney in your... Read more »

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