Adoption can be one of the happiest experiences in a person's life, not only for the joy that comes with assuming the role of parent and caretaker of a baby or child, but also for the realization that the child will now have the comfort and security of loving parents.

Sometimes a child becomes available for adoption because of neglect, abuse or even abandonment. Other times, a child may be given up for adoption by a loving mother who doesn't feel she can provide the right situation for her new baby and wishes for the child to have a more stable life than she can provide.

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Sometimes children are adopted from foreign countries, and although the adoption legally happens elsewhere, an American attorney can assist parents in an American readoption action.

Regardless of a child's story and how he or she came to be available for adoption, once adopted, that child will not have to worry about being taken from a new parent or parents and sent to another foster home, orphanage, etc. Adoption means the child and the parents have all the same legal rights and responsibilities that biological parents and children share.

Under Georgia law, when an individual or couple wishes to adopt a child, a petition must be filed with court that has jurisdiction, which is the Superior Court of their county; however, the Superior Court can grant the Juvenile Court jurisdiction over the adoption if circumstances merit.

These are the most basic requirements for adoption in Georgia, as you will find in the Georgia Code:

  • The adopting parent must be at least 25 years old or must be married and living with a spouse.

  • The adopting parent must be at least 10 years older than the child.

  • The adopting parent must be a bona fide resident of Georgia for at least six months prior to filing the petition for adoption.

  • The adopting parent must be financially, physically and mentally capable of having permanent custody of the child.

There are many requirements and statutes that address the requirements for adoption in Georgia, and it is critical to have the help of a competent, caring attorney to help you with your adoption. Call Hecht Family Law in Alpharetta at 678-926-9234 if you are considering an adoption, and we will help you understand every aspect and nuance of the process.