Every state has different laws pertaining to the requirements and process of adopting a child. Kansas, in particular, has many laws regarding what consent is required, and by whom, for a child to be legally adopted. There are many different factors that have an affect on when and who must consent to the adoption of the child, and if consent is not given, how a child may be adopted regardless. It is important to educate yourself and seek the advice of an experienced Kansas Adoption lawyer to ensure you are handling your adoption matter effectively.
Consent Required for Different Types of Adoption in Kansas
Whether you are considering a private or independent adoption, an agency adoption, or a stepparent or kinship adoption, there are certain applicable rules when it comes to who must provide consent. For example, the most common type of adoption is handled independently and requires consent to be given by:
- The living parents of the child
- One of the parents of the child, if the other’s consent is found unnecessary under § 59‑2136
- If both parents are deceased or if their consent is not required, the legal guardian of the child
- An order entered by the court under § 65
- The judge of any court having jurisdiction over the child pursuant to the code for care of children, if parental rights have not been terminated
However, if you are proceeding with an agency adoption, consent shall be given by the authorized representative of the agency having authority to consent to the adoption of the child. In a stepparent adoption, the consent of the mother is required and if the child has a presumed or legitimate father, their consent must be obtained as well. However, if the child has a presumed or legitimate father yet they have failed to act as such, the court may not require their consent. This may be applicable if the father has failed or refused to assume the duties of a parent for 2 consecutive years immediately prior to the filing of the adoption petition. It may also be applicable if the biological father is unable to give consent for whatever reason. If and when a child reaches the age of 14 and they are of sound mind, their consent may be required as well.
Revocation of Consent
Under limited circumstances it is possible for consent to be revoked. This means that although the person may have previously given consent, they can legally revoke it and their previous consent is no longer valid. This is rare, however courts allow revocation if the consenting party can prove, prior to final decree of adoption, by clear and convincing evidence that the consent was not freely and voluntarily given. If someone is not of sound mind they are not legally able to provide consent, therefore their previously offered consent is considered invalid.
How a Qualified Kansas Adoption Attorney Can Help You Today
If you are in the beginning stages of or are considering adopting a child and you have questions regarding the process and its requirements, our Kansas Adoption Lawyer is here to help. Attorney Tom McDowell has over 40 years of experience and has a passion for helping create families in the most stress-free and effective way possible. Call McDowell Chartered Legal Services today at (316) 633-4322 to see how we can successfully assist you with your adoption matter.