Why Would Someone Want to Adopt an Adult?

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Adoption of individuals is complicated when the person is already an adult and the other party wants to adopt him or her. However, it is possible and is not uncommon for someone to adopt an adult when it is to create or bond with a family that is already related by blood or is chosen by the person being adopted, and this happens to those over 21 often.

There are several reasons to adopt an adult, and many of them are when the adult party is willing to become legally part of the other person’s family. However, even when the adult is willing, other reasons exist such as when the individual is unable to care for himself or herself. He or she may have deficiencies in his or her mind, have emotional damage or may require care due to physical injuries. Adopting the person may permit a legal binding arrangement to ensure that the person is cared for and part of an estate with a trust or other estate plan to provide help after the adopted parent passes on.

Adoption is a legal process for anyone that becomes part of a family no matter how old he or she is. A new birth certificate is issued by the court and other legal relationships are severed with biological or custodial parents in previous relationships. The records are sealed, and last names may change. While there are numerous reasons to perform an adoption for someone over 21 years of age, the possibility of inheritance is the most common. This permits the estate owner to leave property, holdings, real estate and assets to the adopted person without significant problems.

The Reasons to Adopt an Adult

When someone has a relationship with another such as a surrogate parent, someone they’ve grown up with or a foster father or mother, the adult may want to become legally part of the family. This is frequent in families that are pieced together from different biological relationships. Similar reasons may include when an adopted individual has found his or her biological family. The person may wish to be legally connected to the original father or mother that gave him or her up for adoption. If an adult needs perpetual care, he or she may have diminished capacity, a disability or cannot take care of himself or herself. The caregiver may adopt him or her to ensure he or she is taken care of through the rest of his or her life.

Guidelines and Requirements for Adoption

While the guidelines and necessary requirements to ensure an adoption of an adult is accomplished may vary, the state where the process is to be completed should have the necessary information for these procedures. Formal notifications to the birth parents are usually required. Sometimes there are restrictions in place such as the adoptee is to have diminished mental capacity or there to be an agreement between both parties. Some states have rules that if the adoptee is married that the spouse grants consent to the adoption. It is crucial to discover what state requirements must be satisfied before the approval is granted.

Rejections to Adult Adoptions

When state laws or regulations have not been satisfied, a rejection to the adoption application is received. Adult adoptions are often not granted when there was a sexual relationship between the two parties some time in the past. This is to prevent same sex couples from having rights over each other similar to a parent and child. Because of these situations, the adoption is not permitted. Similar rejections are received when the adoptee is older than the adopter. This is often the case in most states in the country. These situations halt the proceedings and the application is rejected entirely.

While many adult adoptions are possible when requirements are met, criminal activity will lead to an immediate rejection. This usually involves some sort of fraud, whether it is real or just alleged. Frequently this is due to someone asking a wealthy benefactor to adopt him or her specifically to inherit property. Without full consent or an understanding of what these processes entail, the courts will consider this fraud. Similar instances occur through insurance, property and marriages.

Legal Adoption

To ensure a rejection is not received when everything is legal and valid, it is frequently necessary to hire a lawyer. This will protect the rights of the client and permit him or her to proceed through legal processes if rejection does occur.

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Disclaimer: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide legal advice as individual situations will differ and should be discussed with an expert and/or lawyer.

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