Question: My 17 year old sister in law is pregnant and would like my husband and I to adopt her baby. What do I need to do to make this legal? What do I do if the father is not able to care for the child....but still wants him, he will probably end up in foster care if the father takes him.
Answer: Adoption usually requires the consent of both biological parents, and the consent has special requirements. You should review A.R.S. §§ 8-106 and 8-107. In fact, you would be wise to review A.R.S. §§ 8-101 through 8-166, which will give you a wealth of information on the topic. The required contents of the adoption petition are set out at A.R.S. § 8-109. Another excellent resource for understanding the more subtle adoption rules and regulations would be to visit the Arizona Division of Children, Youth, and Families online. That agency oversees plenty of adoptions - since it is so heavily involved with foster care in the first place - and could probably give you all sorts of insights about the adoption process.
March 07, 2007