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Same-Sex Adoption Rights in Ohio

If you are a same-sex couple in Ohio and are considering adoption, let Sandusky adoption attorney Shelly L. Kennedy help you navigate the process.

Same-sex couples in Ohio who are interested in adopting a child have the same rights as heterosexual couples who adopt every day. Many members of the LGBTQ community are interested in adoption but have no idea what to expect, or even whether they have a legal right to adopt in the first place. If you want to adopt a child and are concerned about the process, you need an Ohio same-sex adoption attorney who understands the process and has experience helping members of the LGBTQ community. At the Law Offices of Shelly L. Kennedy, I specialize in family law matters, including adoption for same-sex couples.

Home Studies Required

All couples, LGBTQ or not, are required to complete a home study in order to be considered for adoption. It is understandable that as a prospective parent, you may be nervous about this process. You do not need to be, however, as I can help you prepare for the home study and help improve your chances of being approved for an adoption.

The person who conducts the home study will ask you a number of personal questions, including ones about your career, your romantic relationship, income, family, health, and more. He or she will look around your home and inquire as to where a child would be living. He or she will want to talk to family and friends about your overall lifestyle and whether a child is a good fit.

While it may make you feel even more uncomfortable, these are questions asked of all couples, and not just to same-sex couples. The home study is the same no matter who the prospective adoptive parents might be.

LGBTQ-Friendly Adoption Agencies

If you are still concerned about your adoption being rejected, you can do some research and opt for an adoption agency that may be more open to LGBTQ community members. You can start by checking websites to see if any mention welcoming prospective LGBT parents. Be sure to look at the images on the website to see if any point to same-sex couples. If you retain me as your attorney, I can also refer you to an agency that specializes in Ohio same-sex adoptions. The Human Rights Campaign has a list of LGBTQ-friendly agencies that include some options in Ohio, as well.

Same-Sex Stepparent Adoption

Same-sex adoption rights also extend to those people who want to apply for parental rights as a same-sex spouse of an adoptive or biological parent. Stepparent adoptions are available in the probate court of the county where you reside. An Ohio Supreme Court decision paved the way for these rights in Obergefell v. Hodges. Prior to this case, only one parent in a same-sex relationship had any rights to their child. In the past, the parent who did not adopt or give birth was technically a “legal stranger.” This parent had no right to adopt unless the legal parent was willing to give up all of his or her legal rights. Now, if the adoption is granted, both parents’ names will appear on the birth certificate.

Contact a Same-Sex Adoption Attorney Today

If you are a member of the LGBTQ community and need assistance with an adoption in Ohio, contact the Law Offices of Shelly L. Kennedy, Ltd. today to schedule an initial consultation.