Utah Step-Parent Adoptions for Same-Sex Couples

Stephen Howard — Stone River Law

Real People. Real Solutions.

Utah Step-Parent Adoptions for Same-Sex Couples

Last Updated

With the decision by the United States Supreme Court to deny Utah’s petition for a writ of certiorari on the issue of same-sex marriage under Utah’s Amendment 3, the door is open for same-sex couples to legally adopt their children. Many couples may have a child where one spouse is the biological parent, but the other spouse has the status of a step-parent.

The step-parent adoption process is simpler than other kinds of adoptions. Still, the process requires close compliance with various legal requirements, as well as obtaining clearance from the Utah Division of Child and Family Services and the Bureau of Criminal Identification.

For same-sex couples, obtaining the necessary consent to adopt may provide unique challenges. In cases where the other biological parent is deceased, never asserted parental rights, or has had parental rights previously terminated, consent to adopt is required only from the remaining biological parent (i.e., your spouse). But if the other biological parent is alive and still has valid parental rights, then consent from that parent must be obtained or parental rights must be otherwise terminated through legal action.

Some people may hesitate to begin the adoption process because they are afraid that it will be too expensive and time consuming. With the legalization of same-sex marraige, many may find that step parent adoption for same-sex couples is easier and more affordable than they thought it would be.

Finding a Utah Adoption Attorney

If you and your spouse have considered a step-parent adoption, you should consult with an adoption attorney before beginning the process. We work closely with our clients to ensure that all of the necessary paperwork and court filings are prepared quickly and efficiently.

We provide legal services to clients throughout Utah. Contact us now to arrange for an initial consultation with Stephen Howard.