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How Does Adoption Affect Child Support Obligations?

Child support is generally known as the financial obligation of a non custodial biological parent until the child reaches the age of 18. While that is usually true, it also applies to children of adoptive parents. Now this is true regardless of the marital situation or the biological or adoptive status of the parents. For example, if one parent is biological and one is adoptive or both are adoptive, they still are both legally and financially responsible for the children they have together.

Adoption Equals Obligation
To reiterate, adoption is a legal process so the adoptive parents of a child are just as obligated to provide financial support to adoptive children, even if the parents were never married. Step parents are not legally obligated to support the minor children of their new spouses even though they often do. However, should they divorce, the stepparent will not have to pay child support since they have no legal ties to their ex’s children.

However, that changes if the stepparent adopts the child during the marriage. Then the children are legally tie to them and if a divorce occurs, their biological parent may ask for child support. However, the adoptive parent is not always noncustodial; they may take custody and ask for support from the biological parent.

When the Custodial Adoptive Parent Remarries
The biological parent may still have to pay child support if the adoptive parent remarries because their new spouse does not legally owe any financial support to the children unless they, too, adopt the children. However, remarrying makes it possible for a recalculation and, perhaps, a modification to the current child support payment schedule.

Now, if the new stepparent adopts the children, then that will terminate any legal obligations the biological parent has to the children. That means that the biological parent then will not have any legal parental rights toward the child, either. Without the consent of the adoptive parents, the biological parent may not be allowed to seek custody or visitation.

Consider Hiring a Family Law Attorney

If you play any parental role in a child’s life and wish to know more about adoption and financial obligation, you should contact a child support lawyer Austin, TX relies on to help you with the process. Ensure the happiness and financial security of your family by speaking with an attorney to discuss the legal options your family has towards child support, adoption or remarriage. Most lawyers will offer a free consultation, so you don’t lose anything by scheduling an appointment.

Thank you to our friends and contributors at The Law Offices of Ryan S. Dougay for their insight into family law and child support after adoption.