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Are You About to Adopt an Adult? Learning These Things Will Help Ease The Process!

older couple adoption of young adult

We often think the word “adoption” means only adopting infants or little children with no family. But that's not always the case.

Maybe you’ve found the woman who can take the role of your late mother in the house. Or you’re too attached to let your grown-up foster child go. No matter what the reason is, you should know that you can easily go for adult adoption.

But before planning for adult adoption, there are some important factors you should learn. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of things that you should know before adopting an adult. Understanding these things will greatly help you with the whole adoption process.

  1. Know the Requirements

It's important to know the requirements before your start the adult adoption process. Adult adoption needs fewer requirements than other adoption processes.

The main requirement is the consent of the adoptor and adoptee. Since we’re talking about adult adoption, the adoptee’s parents' or partner’s consent won’t be required. Usually, you don't have to go through home study for adult adoption.

But remember, the requirements and guidelines may vary depending on your location and authority. Several states in the U.S have different laws for adult adoption. You must consult with your secretary of state regarding adult adoption.

For instance, if you live in Georgia, you can check out the laws and regulations regarding whether you can adopt an adult in the state or not.

  1. Fill Out the Paperwork

If you meet all the requirements, you should proceed to complete the paperwork for the adult adoption process. You have to fill out the forms and papers given by the court. The forms should contain the consent of the adopter and adoptee.

Then you need to sign the forms in front of a witness. After filling out all the necessary paperwork, you are good to go for the next step of the adult adoption process.

  1. Getting Your Adoption Order

After completing all the paperwork, you must file the papers to the court by paying the required fees. If the court accepts your documents, you can ask for a hearing date.

Some states don’t require any hearing date but it’s better to know the rules around court proceedings beforehand. After the court grants your petition, you’ll receive a court order and your legal process for adult adoption should be completed.

  1. Adult Adoption Process Duration

Suppose you don't face any complications and your paperwork remains solid. In that case, you can complete your legal process for adult adoption within 60 to 90 days.

But if your paperwork contains missing documents or false information, it might take a long amount of time to complete the whole process.

If you plan to adopt an adult from a foreign country, the time for legal process will take even longer time to complete.

  1. The Age Gap Is Important

You know that the age of the adoptee must be above 18 but what about the adopter? Well in most states, there is a guideline about the adopter’s age. It says that the adopter’s age must be higher than the adoptee’s age.

In some states, it’s specifically mentioned that the adopter must be at least 10 years older than the adopter. But what about adopting senior citizens?

Some states allow adult adoptions of senior citizens who can’t take care of themselves. So you can adopt an individual who is older than you. But if you’ve never taken care of elders before, make sure you get tips on how to take care of your elders.

  1. Giving Notice to Biological Parents

Since your adoptee is an adult, there are no parental rights to terminate. So you don't have to worry about the consent of the birth parents of the adoptee in legal proceedings. However, you have to send a notice to the birth parents regarding the adult adoption process.

  1. Consent of the Adoptee’s Spouse

If you adopt someone married, it’s not necessary to get the spouse's consent. But it is encouraged to get consent from the spouse. But even if the spouse doesn’t give consent in the adult adoption process, you can move forward with the adoption in court.

  1. Reasons Why Your Application Might Get Rejected

Not all adult adoption applications get accepted in court. There are many reasons why your application might not get selected. So here are some common reasons behind rejecting adult adoption applications.

  • Preexisting Sexual Relationships

One key condition of accepting adult adoption is you must not have any sexual relationship with your adoptee in the past. Since the court is legalizing the relationship of a child and a parent, any sexual relationship can reject the procedure.

  • Criminal Records

You should know that you can’t adopt any individual with a criminal record in the past. If your adoptee is found to have criminal records, your application can get rejected.

So you must do a background check of your adoptee to check if he or she has any criminal record that can halt the adoption procedure.

  • Fraudulent Documents and Acts

If the court finds your paperwork and documents to be fraudulent, your application will be instantly rejected.

Another thing you must know is that you can't force anyone into the adult adoption process. Both the adopter and adoptee should be able to give full consent without any pressure.

If the court thinks that any one party doesn't fully understand or acknowledge the legal procedure of adult adoption, the court can suspect fraud.

  1. Considering International Adult Adoptions?

It's easier for US citizens to legally proceed with the adult adoption process. But when it comes to adopting an adult from a foreign country, things can get quite tricky.

If the person you want to adopt is from a foreign country, first the person has to fit in line with the immigration policy of the US. Then the person has to go through a layer of scrutiny to proceed.

Adopting adults from foreign countries should cost a lot of time and money. So you are aware of these things while planning foreign adult adoptions.


Adult adoption is getting more common than ever. Now more people are open to the idea of adopting adults. Adopting an adult also comes with a lot of perks.

So if you’re planning on adopting an adult, you need the right information to make the right decision. That’s why following the above-mentioned tips can greatly help you with the legal process of adopting an adult. Good luck!