The Burdette
Law Firm
Lawyers: Germantown - Memphis, TN.
(901) 756-7878
in Germantown
(901) 756-6433
in Memphis

Answers to general legal questions posed by the general public

by Memphis Attorney Christina Burdette

Q: "Should my wife (bio-mom to my step-son) be ...

...a co-petitioner for my step-parent adoption? I am adopting my wife's son and I wanted to know the pros and cons of adding her as a co- or second petitioner."

A: In Shelby County, Tennessee,...

...I always add the biological mom or dad as a co-petitioner to a step-parent adoption. In the document I reaffirm the child/parent relationship between the two. I also attempt to get the other parent to join-in the petition, voluntarily allowing the step-parent adoption to move forward. Without that, the adoption becomes a two-step process. The parental rights of the (typically) father have to be terminated before the adoption can be finalized. When the other other parent joins-in the petition, the adoption can be finalized in one step.

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