Lighthouse Thoughts

The Finalization of an Adoption

A Finalization hearing for an adoption typically occurs at six to eight months after placement of the child with the adoptive family.  Adoptions can be finalized once a termination of parental rights has been completed and Postplacement reports have been completed.


An adoption can be finalized in the adoptive parent’s state of residence or the state the baby was born in.  In many cases adoptive parents are not required to attend the finalization proceedings but factors that may play into the decision making process may include: travel, cost, and if one state has more favorable adoption laws.


A Finalization of an Adoption is typically more a formality than an actual hearing of determination but because it is a legal proceedings you will need to be represented by an attorney.


When the Court issues an adoption decree, adoptive parents are established as the sole, legal and permeant parents of said child. At the conclusion of a Finalization, documents are sent to the State Office of Vital Statistics, a new birth certificate with the adoptive parents listed as the parents.

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