Adoption Attorney

Adopting a child can create a new family or add to an existing family. The path to adopting a child, however, can be filled with challenges and obstacles that can make the adoption process stressful, costly, and time-consuming.

The adoption attorneys at Bennett | Michael | Hornsby are honored to do their part in making dreams come true by helping people navigate the Tennessee adoption process.

Adoption Attorney

We have extensive experience assisting prospective parents through the Tennessee adoption process.

Call for a free consultation so we can help you.

Are There Different Types of Adoption?

The path to adopting a child is not the same for everyone. In fact, there are several different common types of adoption, including:

  • Birth mother (private) adoption. Usually facilitated by an adoption attorney and only involves the birth mother and prospective adoptive parent(s). The adoptive parent(s) often pay the medical bills and living expenses of the birth mother during the pregnancy.
  • Agency adoption. As the name implies, an agency adoption involves an adoption agency acting as an intermediary between prospective parents and the birth mother/child.
  • State agency adoption. This involves adopting a child who is already a ward of the State of Tennessee and whose parents have had their parental rights terminated for one reason or another.
  • International adoption. Adopting a child from another country which involves complying with the adoption laws of both the country of origin and the United States.
  • Family adoption. A family adoption involves adopting a stepchild or a relative (grandparent, aunt, sibling) adopting a child within the existing family unit.

What Are the Steps in a Tennessee Adoption?

For many prospective parents, finding the child they want to adopt is the most difficult first step in the adoption process. The legal process that follows, however, also typically involves several important steps, such as:

  • Filing a petition. Filing a petition to adopt with the appropriate court initiates the legal aspect of the Tennessee adoption process.
  • Background investigation. You (and your spouse if applicable) must submit to a criminal background investigation, medical examination, and agree to a home study. Conducted by a licensed social worker, the home study helps determine if the prospective home is an appropriate placement for the child. The home study requirement may be waived in a stepparent adoption.
  • Training and education. You may be required to go through an extensive training and education class as part of the adoption process.
  • Termination of parental rights. If the child’s birth parents still have legal rights to the child, those rights must be terminated before you can adopt. The only exception to this requirement is when it is a stepparent adoption. In that case, one parent retains his/her parental rights.

How Can an Adoption Attorney Help Me?

By its nature, adoption is an emotional process even without adding in roadblocks or hurdles. Navigating an unexpected obstacle in an unfamiliar judicial system during such an emotional time can be too much to handle alone. Having an experienced adoption attorney on your side significantly decreases the likelihood of encountering obstacles in the first place and provides you with crucial advice and guidance if one is encountered along the path to adopting a child.

Contact Us

The Murfreesboro adoption attorneys at Bennett | Michael | Hornsby have extensive experience helping prospective parents through the Tennessee adoption process and we would be honored to do the same for you. Contact the team today by calling 615-898-1560 to schedule your appointment.

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