What criteria must I meet to adopt in California?

By |2022-04-04T18:43:36+00:0029 Jan 2019|Categories: Family Law|


An individual may have long yearned to be a parent but never found that right person to have a child with. They may have struggled with infertility and want a son or daughter to complete their family. These are just two factors that motivate individuals to look at adoption as a way to complete their families. California lawmakers have instituted guidelines to keep children safe and help ensure that they are in a loving home.

There’s no requirement for you to be married if you want to adopt in California. Single individuals are eligible to adopt children.

While there’s no age limit, the prospective parent must be 10 or more years older than the child that they’re bringing into their home. If the person adopting the child is a first cousin, stepparent, sibling or other relative, then the age gap requirement may be disregarded.

Individuals with felony convictions on their records may even be able to adopt. While those who have been found guilty of domestic violence or child abuse will likely have difficulty if they seek to adopt, those with other convictions may be able to move forward with the adoption. A case worker will likely consider how long ago the crime occurred and whether you’ve been rehabilitated when deciding whether you can adopt.

You may have to sit down with a social worker to make sure that you’re aware of the highs and lows that come with adoption and that you and your spouse or family are all on board with the process before you’re allowed to continue. You may be required to undergo a home study before a placement can occur as well.

If you are considering adopting a child, you should consult with an experienced family law attorney to learn more about the additional qualifications that you may have to meet to adopt a child. Once it’s confirmed that you meet those criteria, your attorney can walk you through what to expect during the process.

About the Author:

Dorie Anne Rogers - The Law Offices of Dorie A. Rogers, APC
Dorie A. Rogers, a Family Law Specialist, Certified by the State Bar of California, has been an attorney since 1981 with an exclusive family law practice located in Orange County. She is accepting dissolution cases with support and property issues including the use of forensics to ascertain business value, community interests and to establish monthly case flow analysis. Ms. Rogers has substantial experience in high conflict custody litigation involving sophisticated psychological issues. She drafts premarital and postmarital agreement designed to define and establish parties' separate and community property interests. Paternity cases and domestic violence matters are considered part of her practice. Ms. Rogers is a court-approved and court-appointed to represent minor children.Ms. Rogers consults with individuals concerned about entering or exiting a relationship. She advises effective strategies for dissolution or premarital planning. Knowledge is power and good planning affords better results.Specialties: Family Law Specialist, Certified by the State Bar of California
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