Decades Of Successful Representation

Fairfax Family Law Attorneys Guiding Families Through Adoptions with Compassion and Clarity

Adoption in Virginia offers several paths to creating a loving family. Whether it’s foster care, international, stepparent, close relative, parental placement, or adult adoptions, each type has its unique process and requirements. Foster care adoptions are the most common, providing permanent homes for children currently in the foster system. Understanding these options lets you choose the path best for your family’s needs and circumstances.

Choosing Robinson Law, PLLC means selecting a team dedicated to making your adoption journey smooth and successful. Our attorneys have been recognized as Top Lawyers by Northern Virginia Magazine and have received the Client’s Choice Award, reflecting our commitment to providing exceptional service in various legal matters, such as no-fault divorces and name changes. We prioritize your needs, offering support and guidance throughout the adoption process. If you’re considering adoption or are currently in the process, the Fairfax family law attorneys at Robinson Law, PLLC, are here to support you every step of the way. Call us today at 703-214-8496 to schedule a consultation and take the first step toward expanding your family.

What are the Types of Adoptions Available in Virginia?

Understanding the different types of adoptions in Virginia is crucial for anyone looking to expand their family. With the variety of adoption types and the complexities of Virginia state laws, it can be daunting to know where to start. Adoption procedures in Virginia are governed by Chapter 12 of the Code of Virginia, which allows for two primary types of adoptive placements: agency placements and non-agency placements. Within these categories are the following types of adoptions.

Fairfax Foster Care Adoptions

Foster care adoptions happen when a child is in the custody of a local Department of Social Services (LDSS) or a licensed child-placing agency. In these cases, all parental rights are terminated, and custody with the authority to place the child for adoption is given to the agency, which then consents to the child’s adoption. Virginia’s foster care system currently has about 5,400 children, with over 700 children ready for adoption right now. Remarkably, over 70% of foster care youth in Virginia are adopted by their foster parents. The LDSS aims to reunite children with their family of origin within 12 months, and if adoption is the goal, it should be finalized within 24 months.

Stepparent Adoptions

Stepparent adoptions are a type of non-agency adoption where one parent’s rights are terminated, and a new parent, such as a new spouse, adopts the child. These adoptions involve the birth parents or legal guardian(s) consenting to the adoption, with parental rights terminated by the final adoption order. Stepparent adoptions provide a legal bond that solidifies the family unit, ensuring the child’s stability and emotional security.

Close Relative Adoptions

Close relative adoptions also fall under non-agency placements. In these cases, a close family member, such as a grandparent, aunt, uncle, or sibling, adopts the child. This type of adoption maintains the child’s connection to their biological family, providing a familiar and supportive environment. The process involves the consent of the birth parents or legal guardian(s), and the court finalizes the termination of parental rights.

Parental Placement Adoptions

Parental placement adoptions occur when birth parents place their child directly with the prospective adoptive parents without the involvement of an agency. These adoptions are non-agency placements, where the birth parents consent to the adoption, and the final order of adoption terminates parental rights. This type of adoption allows birth parents to have a say in who adopts their child, often resulting in a smoother transition for everyone involved.

Adult Adoptions

Adult adoptions are unique because they involve adopting individuals over 18. These adoptions can be initiated for various reasons, such as formalizing a long-standing parent-child relationship or ensuring inheritance rights. LDSS is generally not involved in adult adoptions unless the Circuit Court orders an investigation or suitability report. This process provides legal recognition and the benefits of a familial relationship for adults.

Agency Versus Non-Agency Placements in Virginia

Understanding the difference between agency and non-agency placements is crucial. Fairfax agency placements are managed by local departments of social services or licensed child-placing agencies, focusing on children in their custody. In contrast, non-agency placements include parental, stepparent, close relative, and adult adoptions, where the adoption is consented to by the birth parents or legal guardians without agency involvement.

Compassionate and Skilled Legal Support

Navigating Virginia’s adoption laws requires knowledge and a compassionate approach. At Robinson Law, PLLC, our attorneys have the skills and empathy to guide you through the adoption process. Whether you’re considering foster care adoption, stepparent adoption, or another type, we provide the support and legal counsel you need to build your family.

Do You Have Questions About the Virginia Adoption Process?

If you are considering an adoption, it is essential that you prepare yourself for the process.  At Robinson Law, PLLC, we’ve assembled a dedicated team of Fairfax adoption lawyers who are both knowledgeable and experienced in handling all types of adoptions. We offer free consultations to all prospective clients, during which we will answer your questions, provide you with an overview of the process, and explain what we can do to help you complete your family. To learn more, and to speak with a Virginia adoption attorney about your needs today, give the lawyers at Robinson Law, PLLC a call at 703-542-3616. You can also connect with us through our secure online contact form.