Nashville Adoption Attorneys
The Adoption Lawyers with Brighter DaySM Law Practice in Cheatham County, Davidson County, Montgomery County, Sumner County, Robertson County, Williamson County, Wilson County, Rutherford County and Throughout Middle Tennessee
Adoption is the legal process of transferring parental rights and responsibilities from a child’s biological or current parents to adoptive parents. This can be done through a voluntary surrender of parental rights or an adverse contested termination of parental rights. The Nashville adoption attorneys at Brighter DaySM Law can help you with every aspect of your adoption case. Contact our adoption lawyers today to schedule a case evaluation.
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Types of Adoption Cases Brighter Day
Our adoption attorneys at Brighter DaySM Law are able to assist married couples, single parents, LGBTQIA+ families and foster parents that are either prospective adoptive parents or birth parents with their case.
Termination of Parental Rights
In order for a child to be adopted all parental and guardianship rights to that child must be terminated, either voluntarily or adversely by a court. An action to terminate parental rights may be filed by the prospective adoptive parents who must prove by clear and convincing evidence that there are grounds to terminate a birth parent’s parental rights and that termination of those rights is in the child’s best interest.
In Tennessee, a birth parent may surrender his or her parental rights directly to prospective adoptive parents who have a favorable home study which has been completed by a licensed child placing agency. We can work with prospective adoptive parents or birth parents to assist with these matters.
Our attorneys are able to work with licensed child placing agencies who take guardianship of children.
Sometimes children are in the legal custody of a relative or grandparent and there is little hope of reunification with the birth parent. Sometimes a step-parent has taken on the role of parent because the biological parent is completely out of the picture. In those situations, we can help you pursue termination of parental rights and adoption to provide permanency and stability for the children in your care.
Interstate Compact Adoptions
Sometimes it is necessary to cross state lines to complete an adoption. We are experienced in working with the Interstate Compact on the placement of Children.
Department of Children’s Services Adoptions
Brighter DaySM Law attorneys are on the list of attorneys approved to handle adoptions for children who are in the full guardianship of the State of Tennessee.
Consent to Adoption
Consent of legal parents may be obtained through voluntary surrender of parental rights. However, it is necessary for the prospective adoptive parents to have an approved home study by a licensed child placing agency before a surrender will be approved by the court. The consent of a putative father may be obtained through a signed Waiver of Interest. The consent of a legal father, who has established by scientific evidence that he is not the biological father may be obtained by a signed Denial of Paternity. If a legal parent is related to the prospective adoptive parents his or her consent may be obtained by making the legal parent a co-petitioner to the petition for adoption. The signing of the adoption petition acts as a termination of that parent’s parental rights.
Every case is unique and dependent on specific facts. Contact Brighter DaySM Law’s adoption lawyers to discuss your situation.
Frequently Asked Questions Answered by Our Nashville Adoption Attorney
In Tennessee, the birth mother and the legal or putative father must consent to the adoption or have their parental rights otherwise terminated. A birth mother may consent to adoption three days after the child’s birth. Consent is given through a surrender of parental rights in front of a judge. A judge will witness the consent of the birth mother, legal father, or putative father and affirm that they understand what they are doing. This is done in private in the judge’s chambers. A putative father may sign a Waiver of Interest prior to the child’s birth if he has received an affidavit from the birth mother that she believes he is the biological father.
How long the adoption process will take depends on whether or not the adoption is contested.
For uncontested adoptions, if it is a person who is not related to the child they are adopting the child must be in the home under the supervision of a licensed child placing agency for a minimum of six months. If the person is related to the child the six months may be waived. Following the six months of supervision, your attorney can set your case on the docket for finalization.
For a contested termination of parental rights, the process can take a year to 18 months based on your unique circumstances and the court schedule.