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Can I adopt my same-sex partner's kids?

Colorado's adoption laws permit a number of parties the right to seek to adopt the children that they love. While individuals generally must be 21-years-old or older to pursue adoption, younger parties may seek to adopt, if they are able to secure approval from the courts. The martial status of individuals hoping to adopt also does not affect their rights to do so, but in most cases, individuals joined to their partners through marriage or civil unions must petition for adoption together.

To this end, individuals in same-sex partnerships and marriages may generally pursue the adoption of their partners' children. The state does not prohibit same-sex adoptions and the laws of Colorado allow stepparent adoptions. Just as heterosexual couples may seek to have stepparents become the legal parents of their partners' kids so too may same-sex couples enjoy these rights.

Prior posts on this Colorado family law blog address the adoption process for same-sex couples, but with an emphasis on both partners to the couple seeking to adopt a child who is not the biological child of either of the partners. In situations like those posed by the question of this post, the same-sex partners of parents may work within the courts to become the parents of their spouses' kids.

Adopting a child, whether through fostering or a marital relationship, is a big step for any individual. Once an adoption goes through the new parent enjoys the rights and responsibilities that come with looking after and raising a child. Before beginning the adoption process, individuals are encouraged to discuss how the process will impact their rights and legal relationships with attorneys who work in the family law field. As every case is different, readers are asked to discuss the particulars of their cases with their lawyers, as this post should not be used as legal advice.

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