How to Adopt Your Stepchild

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Adopting your stepchild requires that the birth parent give written consent. Find out more about adopting your stepchild with expert tips from a psychologist in this free video about family counseling.

Part of the Video Series: Parenting & Family Advice
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Video Transcript

Hello, have you ever considered adopting your step child? Well I'm Dr Felicia and I have a few tips for you in that area. When you want to adopt a step child depending on what age the child is, the courts will become involved; it's a legal process you that you need to go through. One of the requirements is that the birth father actually sign over rights to the child as well. Sometimes this is a problem, sometimes the original birth parent or birth father denies wanting to sign over or sometimes they're just missing in action and you can't actually find them to get the signature. This is true weather it's the mother or the father who left the family. In either case, when you're adopting a step child it should be discussed openly in the family. It should be discussed between you and the original birth parent that, that is remaining so that they, well everyone has the same set of rules is what they expect from the adoption. And of course most children are very glad to be adopted and have somebody love them to that degree. The adoption rules need to be set out by your attorney and of course you will have to go through the court process, there's a lot of paper work involved but it's doable. I have personally been in the court room when many families have received their final papers of adoption and it's a very joyful moment in time, and everyone goes out to celebrate. So becoming a family unified in the sense of the sanction of the law is very meaningful to many. So I encourage you to go ahead with the process, when you're considering adopting your step child but do know that there's a lot of paper work and a lot of required signatures. I do wish you good luck. This is Dr. Felicia signing out for now, bye.

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