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How to Adopt in Texas

Adopting a child is a big step and a decision that needs a lot of thinking through.

A person who wishes to adopt assumes all the same legal rights and responsibilities as the biological or natural parent of the one being adopted. There are a couple of legal formalities to go through and this is because an adoptive relationship is permanent in nature.

There are certain laws and regulations which set apart the adoption process in Texas from that of other states. A few steps may slightly vary among agencies but the overall process still remains the same.

Adoption Requirements

Any adult who is responsible enough has the capability to adopt a child under law of the state. Marriage or being married is not a requirement for adoption. However, if the adoptive parent is married, the spouse is required to be a party in the adoption petition. Legal proof of marriage or divorce should be submitted to the state authorities.

The adoptive parent must show that he or she is financially stable or capable of taking care of the would-be adopted child. This does not necessarily mean that the adoptive parent must be independently wealthy or must own his or her own home. Maturity is the significant factor here to determine whether or not the applicant is capable of providing for a child’s needs, both short-term and long-term.

Meetings and Training

If one is interested in adoption, the first step is to go and find an information meeting sponsored and organized by the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS).

These meetings and trainings happen throughout the year, free of charge, in the Dallas and Houston areas. DFPS staff will provide basic information on the adoption process. They will also answer any questions regarding adoption in general at the meeting.

Accomplishing the basic requirements stated above will result to a meeting with a DFPS staff. This shall begin the assessment of the fitness for adoption of the family.

The adoptive parent must undergo trainings which last for several hours, with an organization known as the Parent Resource Information Development Education (PRIDE). PRIDE conducts training for both adoptive families and prospective foster.

Lastly, the completion of a home study with an adoption caseworker is also required in the process of adoption.

How to Deal with Private Agencies

A number of private adoption agencies work with DFPS to give assistance with the placement of children in homes throughout the state. Many of these agencies provide their own adopting requirements.

Some of these requirements include being at least twenty-five (25) years old, passing a criminal background check, and being a member of a particular church in cases of some religious-based groups.

A Texas family law attorney can also help in dealing with private adoption agencies and the DFPS to help in determining whether one has met all necessary requirements or not.

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Mr. Hutton is a Divorce and Custody Lawyer based out of Round Rock, TX. His background is with child psychology at Arizona State University where he received a B.S. in 2006, and he continued this by working with the Children’s Right’s Clinic at the University of Texas School of Law where he received his J.D. in 2009. Throughout his practice, he has been a strong proponent of utilizing modern technology to improve his practice and the representation of his clients. He currently is the technology chair of CAFA of Travis County and is committed to improving and modernizing the practice of law in Texas. If you have any questions you can contact him at

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