Understanding the Basics of Child Adoption Law in Allentown, PA

by | May 29, 2018 | Legal Services

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Every U.S. state has a different set of child adoption laws in place, so it’s important for adoptive parents to familiarize themselves with relevant laws in the state where they plan to adopt. Those who wish to adopt a child in Pennsylvania can find some basic information about child adoption law in Allentown, PA below that will help them get started. Read on to find answers to some frequently asked questions.

Who Can Adopt?

Pennsylvania’s child adoption laws are some of the least restrictive around. Any adult can adopt a child if they meet requirements and pass a home evaluation. There is no age limit or marriage requirement, but it’s good to keep in mind that the requirements that are in place often vary based on the type of adoption parents are pursuing.

Who Can Be Adopted?

Any minor being adopted must have their biological parents’ parental rights terminated before becoming eligible for adoption. New mothers must wait at least 72 hours in the state of Pennsylvania to consent to terminate parental rights, and this consent must be witnessed by at least two people; fathers, on the other hand, can offer consent to terminate their rights at any time. Any child over the age of 12 will have to consent to the adoption before it goes through as well.

Are There Residency Requirements?

Pennsylvania is actually one of the few states that currently doesn’t have residency requirements for adoption. However, the courts and adoption agencies can still require temporary placement before the finalizing of the adoption.

What Is the Difference Between Open and Closed Adoptions?

Like most states, Pennsylvania allows both open and closed adoptions. During an open adoption, there is usually some form of contact between the adopted children and their birth parents. If the birth parents refuse their consent to contact, on the other hand, it is known as a closed adoption. There are some exceptions to closed adoptions, though, particularly if one or more of the birth parents suffered from genetic disorders and must be tracked for medical reasons.

Learn More Today

Want to learn more about child adoption law in Allentown, PA? The next step to take is to find a lawyer who can offer in-depth answers to further questions. Contact us today to schedule an initial consultation.