Termination and adoption can be confusing and above all, emotional
When it comes to termination and adoption, actions to terminate the parent-child relationship and to establish the relationship by adoption are often interrelated
Are termination and adoption handled separately?
The facts of the case may require separate termination and adoption proceedings. Occasionally the circumstance will justify a combined termination and adoption proceeding.
Legally, what is an adoption?
An adoption is a procedure to establish the parent-child relationship between the child and adopting parents. You can read more about the Texas Family Code here.
What is a termination of a parent-child relationship?
A termination of parental rights ends the legal parent-child relationship.
The rights of parents
A Court can take the rights and duties of a parent if he or she violates the law. A parent can also voluntarily terminate his or her rights. Prior to an adoption, a termination of parental rights must be completed.
Any child residing in Texas at the time a petition for adoption is filed may be adopted if…
1 | The parent-child relationship between the child and each living parent has been terminated or a termination suit is joined with the adoption proceeding;
2 | The parent whose rights have not been terminated is the spouse of the petitioner in a stepparent adoption (in which case the parent must join the stepparent’s petition for adoption as evidence of the parents’ consent);
3 | The child is at least two years old, the parent-child relationship has been terminated with respect to one parent, the person seeking adoption has been a managing conservator or has had actual care, possession, and control of the child for a period of six months preceding the adoption or is the child’s former stepparent, and the non-terminated parent consents to the adoption; or
4 | The child is at least two years old, the parent-child relationship has been terminated with respect to one parents, and the person seeking the adoption is the child’s former stepparent and has been a managing conservator or has had actual care, possession, and control of the child for a period of one year preceding the adoption.