Stepparent adoption is one of the most common types of adoption in the State of Texas. A stepparent adoption of a stepchild creates a permanent and legal parent-child relationship between the stepparent and the child. Therefore, in the eyes of the law, it is as if the stepparent is a biological parent. This means that even if the stepparent and biological parent were to be divorced later, the parent-child relationship would survive the divorce and the stepparent would still have all of the rights and responsibilities of a biological parent in a divorce proceeding.
Generally, there must be a termination of one of the biological parent’s rights. This is possible when a biological parent has either voluntarily relinquished their rights or they have been terminated by the State due to abandonment, abuse/neglect, or being deemed as an unfit parent. Depending on the facts of the case we are often able to combine an adoption and termination into one proceeding.
Once the adoption is complete, Texas law no longer recognizes the adoptive parent as a stepparent; the adoptive parent now has all the duties, rights, and obligations to the child as any biological parent.
Want to discuss your rights as a stepparent? Our Houston adoption lawyer handles stepparent adoptions all across Texas. Contact our office today at (713) 352-7955 for a consultation.