Are you a guardian who would like to adopt your wards? Are you currently attempting to complete a guardianship? Do you have children living with you because the parents have left the children in your care and you have no legal authority to take the children to doctors appointments or enroll them in school? Do you have a guardianship over children and their biological parents are deceased? If so, then you should consider guardianship adoption.
Bob and Judy are friends with parents who have left a child in their care. The parents did not give Bob and Judy any authority to enroll the child in school or take the child to the doctor. Bob and Judy were granted a guardianship over the child, Jill. Jill’s parents have failed to follow court orders, have failed to follow treatment plans, and have failed to visit with Jill. Neither parent pays child support. Bob and Judy wish to provide Jill with a permanent home.
Bob and Judy should consider a guardianship adoption of Jill. This would make Bob and Judy the legal parents of Jill. Completing a guardianship adoption should be done by a lawyer experienced in guardianship adoptions. Before a guardianship adoption can take place, the parental rights of the biological parents must be terminated.
If you are considering a guardianship adoption, you should consult an adoption attorney. Although you might be providing a home for your grandchildren through a guardianship, adoption might be a better option because it provides more stability and ends court supervision. Once the adoption is final, there will no longer be any annual reports or home visits as there are in a guardianship. Also, when you start receiving social security benefits, the child you adopt may receive benefits as well.
When can you use the Guardianship Adoption option?
Guardianship Adoption may be considered when:
•The parental rights of the biological parents have been terminated by court order or by death;
•The parents have, without good cause, failed to follow a court-structured reunification plan;
•A guardianship exists and the parents have the ability to support the child, but fail to do so without good cause for a period of two years prior to filing the petition for termination AND the parents have the ability to visit, contact, or communicate with the child and fail to do so for a period of two years or more prior to filing the petition for termination; or
•The parents have physically abused or abandoned the minor child, or are incarcerated for a period of more than two years.
What are the limitations of Guardianship Adoption?
Because a guardianship adoption would make you the parents of your grandchildren, limitations are few, apart from the limitations of your own stamina. Once the termination proceedings and the adoption proceedings are completed, this arrangement will not need to be renewed or reviewed. You will become parents. Then, it will be up to you to be the best parents you can be!!!
Click here for a video where Ken Rathert talks about Guardianship Adoption.