Negative emotions and lack of self-belief can affect the outcome of your family legal matter – Fight for your rights without fear. Can a step-parent legally adopt their step-child? OP’s posts: See next | See all Add message | Report | See all. (ii) partners in a permanent domestic life-partnership; or. Adoption is the legal process whereby the existing parental authority a mother and/or father has over a child is terminated and awarded to the new adoptive parent/s. For a full view of the Act and the relevant sections, click here. You may want to enter into an antenuptial contract. Our Lawyer (Pty) Ltd - Our Location - 7th Floor Consent can be given by the parents, the guardian of the child or the child. [14] The advice allegedly given by officials of the Children’s Court to prospective applicants for adoption that, in terms of s. 242 of the Act, the granting of an application for adoption by a step-parent will automatically terminate all rights and responsibilities of the parent in respect of the child, ignores the exception provided for in the preamble of s. 242. Adult Adoption. Between 2016 and 2018, 105 babies were abandoned in the Western Cape. An adult adoption is the easiest type of adoption. For a full view of the Act and the relevant sections, click here. Paying for a child is a crime in South Africa. Whatever the reason, this article deals with the legal aspects. For years this beautiful landlocked country in the horn of Africa was one of the top five sending countries to the United States. adoption of a person older than 18 years by an adult? Speak to us. Steps for changing your marriage from in community of property to out of community of property. By adopting a stepchild, you are agreeing to be entirely responsible for your spouse’s child. The word "stepchild" disappears into irrelevance. Adopting your partner's children is often a big step in your relationship with your new partner, and it can be a big legal step too. If your stepchild is a Singapore Citizen, the process is the same as adopting a child who is a Singapore Citizen. You will want to verify with them if you can legally represent yourself (if you’re choosing that route) and where you can find the necessary stepchild adoption paperwork. First, the consent of a biological parent is not required in an adult stepchild adoption. Here are some questions people ask and search for online. (b) the whereabouts of the child’s parent or guardian cannot be established; (d) the child’s parent or guardian has abused or deliberately neglected the child, or, has allowed the child to be abused or deliberately neglected; or. The relevant case is Petersen v Maintenance Officer Simon’s Town Maintenance Court and Others 2004 2 SA 56 (C) 381 . Adoption laws in South Africa are outlined by the Child Care Act of 1983, which require social workers and adoption agencies to "give due consideration" to language, religion and culture when matching prospective parents with children. Questions parents ask in child custody disputes. If your stepchild is from the People’s Republic of China, there … Child born out of wedlock: Mother will not consent to her surname change and to be registered as her biological father. The Children’s Court is obliged to function in a manner which in each case promotes the best interests of the child and should, except where there are sound reasons not to do so, make an order that the granting of an adoption order in favour of a step-parent will not terminate the responsibilities and rights of the child’s parent or other guardian. (d) does not affect any rights to property the child acquired before the adoption. (d) any previous order made in respect of the placement of the child. We were Online and Trusted since 2007. There have been many queries about step-parent adoptions and there seems to be little information regarding what is involved in the process from a South African perspective. Sometimes, the step-parent would want to adopt the child, affording him or her legal … He was very knowledgeable around each situation and gave me the right advice to take things forward. Our Lawyer (Pty) Ltd Copyright All right reserved 2019. You will not need the other parent’s consent if the court has already removed his or her parental rights. Sometimes, the step-parent would want to adopt the child, affording him or her legal rights and responsibilities over the child. Susan Larkan speaks to Our Lawyer on the serious issue of Gender-based Violence in South Africa. Face to Face, Telephonic or Video (Skype, Zoom, FaceTime or WhatsApp Video). 2.It is declared that section 242 of the Children’s Act, 38 of 2005, does not automatically terminate all the parental responsibilities and rights of the guardian of a child when an adoption order is granted in favour of the spouse or permanent domestic life-partner of that guardian, having regard to the discretion which section 242 affords the court to order otherwise. We use cookies to give you the best possible experience on our website. The entire court application was completed in 6 – 8 weeks! (36 Posts) Add message | Report. One of the main requirements of stepchild adoption is getting the consent of both birth parents – your spouse and the noncustodial parent. Child Custody and Relocation – Question and Answers by Advocate Muhammad Abduroaf. Completing an adult stepparent adoption, where you are adopting a child who is 18 years of age or older, is the simplest of all adoptions. Is adult adoption permitted under South African law? Second only to China, at the height of intercountry adoption in 2010, 2,511 Ethiopian children found their forever homes in the United States. By giving his or her consent, the noncustodial parent gives up all rights and responsibilities, including child support. What are the legal implications of a step-parent adopting a child in South Africa? Although South Africa is a signatory to the Hague Convention on International Adoption, with designated adoption partners in a range of countries, I have been given numerous examples of … 1. Given it is rare for a Court to be prepared to make an adoption order for a step child, step parents should know there other ways to still give legal status to their relationship with their step child. Any advice on adopting a stepchild please? Stepparent adoptions occur on a regular basis and are one of the most common forms of adoption. I will highly recommend the services of Our Lawyer (Pty) Ltd – Adv Abduroaf and his team, through and through. By continuing to use this site you consent to the use of cookies on your device as described in our cookie policy unless you have disabled them. You must provide the non-custodial parent with notice that you are adopting their child. The legal procedures involving this scenario are different, as the laws in every State may vary slightly. Someone in need may find it useful. Lastly, should all go well, the court would make an adoption order. A child can consent to adoption … (1) Except when provided otherwise in the order or in a post-adoption agreement confirmed by the court an adoption order terminates –. Paying for a child . (iii) other persons sharing a common household and forming a permanent family unit; (b) by a widower, widow, divorced or unmarried person; (c) by a married person whose spouse is the parent of the child or by a person whose permanent domestic life-partner is the parent of the child; (4 by the biological father of a child born out of wedlock; or. Copyright 2020 Government of South Africa. (a) all parental responsibilities and rights any person, including a parent, step-parent or partner in a domestic life partnership, had in respect of the child immediately before the adoption; (b) all claims to contact with the child by any family member of a person referred to in paragraph (a); (c) all rights and responsibilities the child had in respect of a person referred to in paragraph (a) or (b) immediately before the adoption; and. We are conveniently situated in the Pinnacle Building, Cape Town Cape Town South Africa. We will first deal with the issue as which child may be adopted. Your email address will not be published. Serve the non-custodial parent with the adoption forms. DID YOU ALSO KNOW: Advocate Muhammad Abduroaf was an advocate in an important constitutional case? This website provided many in South Africa with the advice they needed. Required fields are marked *. Divorce – There is no reason why your divorce should not be friendly and uncontested. Apply for an Adoption Order. However, the Children’s Act does not discriminate on the basis of age, marital status, race, culture or sexual orientation of the adoptive parents. my husband wants to adopt my eldest daughter, we have no idea what to do . It often happens that a couple marries and there are step-children involved. Stepparent adoption is a form of “relative adoption,” which is adoption of a child by somebody who is related to the child by blood or marriage. I found him to be clear and honest always with his dealings. Grandparents may be ordered to pay child support for their grandchildren, How do I get full custody over my child? At the same time, unless there is a post-adoption agreement stating otherwise, the other parent loses all his or her rights over the child. DID YOU KNOW: Advocate Muhammad Abduroaf was the advocate who won a ground-breaking case for his client? Find out more about  consenting to adoption or contact the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development on 012 357 8205 or e-mail: children@justice.gov.za. Child Maintenance in South Africa – Cape Town, Execute and Register your Antenuptial or Prenuptial Contract, Out of Community of Property with the inclusion of the Accrual Regime. “I’ve made use of the legal services of Our Lawyer (Pty) Ltd – Adv Abduroaf on two separate occasions, and I was thoroughly impressed. If so - Answered by a verified Family Lawyer . Need Legal Advice? ‘Consent’ is written permission by the biological parents or where there are no biological parents, by a guardian, that is given to prospective adoptive parents to adopt a child. With both situations, I knew very little regarding the process and my rights, as an applicant. The relevant case is Soller v Maintenance Magistrate, Wynberg and Others 2006 2 SA 66 (C) 2006 446 . Whether you're battling with infertility or simply have a desire to expand your family, adoption might be the right decision for you. You can only apply for national adoption if you are a South African citizen residing in South Africa and you want to adopt a South African child. However, did you ever consider that things are not as bad as you think they are and that with sound legal advice, the problem you are facing can easily be solved? Adopting a Family Member; Stepchild Adoptions; The Legal Process of Stepchild Adoption. We are in a secure and safe location in the Cape Town CBD Adoptive parents need to be 18 or older and South African citizens or permanent residents. We are here to assist. https://www.ourlawyer.co.za/wp-content/uploads/3000-our-lawyer.mp4, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y2UNpeFcU04, Basic Divorce Guide in South Africa – Summons, Pleas, Discovery and Trial. BONKERZ Sun 11-Jan-09 19:13:08. my dh wanted to adopt my DS so we looked into it. This website provides just that, and is run by a team of dedicated adoption professionals. Once adopted, the stepchild has the same rights as a biological child. Find out more about consenting to adoption or contact the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development on 012 357 8205 or e-mail: children@justice.gov.za A spouse would therefore have a child from a previous relationship. Passport Application of a Minor Child and Consent – Department of Home Affairs, Frequently Asked Questions and Answers on Prenuptial and Ante-nuptial Contracts. This was not possible for over 80 years. The other options are detailed in the information sheet What are the alternatives to a Step-Parent adopting their Step-Child. thank you for your time. There is actually not a big difference in the process between step-parent adoption and regular adoption. the biological father has never been in my sons life and on his birth certificate under father its written unknown. The adoption agency will conduct a screening/ home study to check if you are fit and proper to adopt a child. It will, save in exceptional circumstances, clearly be in the best interests of the child that such an order be made. A child can consent to adoption if he or she is 10 years or older. All Rights Reserved, Department of Justice and Constitutional Development, Children’s Act, 2005 (Act 38 of 2005) as amended, Adoptions - Department of Social Development. Once the step-parent adopts the child, he or she has full parental responsibilities and rights as outlined above., The court can also order that you retain your parental responsibilities and rights over your child. I.e. Next, we deal with who may adopt a child. What can I do? In total, 15,807 adoptions occurred from Ethiopia to the United States from 1999-2017 but then everything changed. lottiesmummy Sun 11-Jan-09 19:08:49. anyone? Stepdads can adopt in every state, but the laws for adoption in each state are slightly different. It starts at section 228 and ends at section 253. how do i go about having my fiance legally adopting my son and taking his last name? What all separated parents should know prior to the holiday season. My child is 22 years old, do I still have a legal obligation to pay child maintenance? A child whose parents are both dead is available for adoption. Don't subscribe The responsibility towards the child would now also fall on the step-parent. What you should do Go to any adoption agency in any province of your choice to apply. Legal Services | Face to Face – Telephonice – Video (Zoom | FaceTime | Skype | WhatsApp Video). Step-parents can apply to adopt their spouse’s or partner’s child without the partner, who is already the biological parent of the child, also applying to adopt the child. Step #1. Replies to my comments Here's how to adopt your stepchild. Consent for minor child for relocation and passport application, Child Maintenance Court Process from Start to finish – Adv. The father does not want to consent to a passport and the Relocation from South Africa with my minor child. The first related to a child maintenance issue and the second, an international relocation application with the high court. If the problem is not promptly solved, you are left with doubt and constantly worrying about the situation. Consent is written permission by the biological parents, or where there are no biological parents, by a guardian, that is given to prospective adoptive parents to adopt a child. Most often, people adopt from South Africa rather than the other way around. (Another common type of relative adoption is adoption by grandparents, but stepparent adoption is far more common. Notify me of followup comments via e-mail. His advice on my maintenance issue allowed me to proceed further on my own, with the maintenance court. It only makes sense to adopt your stepchild and eliminate the legal barriers. It often happens that a couple marries and there are step-children involved. How can I be successful in my child custody battle? This can be achieved by knowing your rights, and where you stand in your situation. Questions on Divorce – Frequently Asked Questions and Answers South Africa, Child Maintenance / Support Questions and Answers, Parenting Plans and the Law – Draft, Agree and Register you Plan, Tricks and tips on how to win your child maintenance case, https://www.ourlawyer.co.za/wp-content/uploads/Child-Maintenance-Applications-Where-do-you-go.mp4, https://www.ourlawyer.co.za/wp-content/uploads/Abduroaf-Child-Custody-and-Guardianship.mp4, Failure to pay child maintenance – Cape Town. The prevailing principle in South Africa is that a spouse has no general duty to support a child born of another marriage unless the child is, in consequences of a … If you want to know how to adopt an adult stepchild, there are some important things to be aware of. Steps. (e) the child is in need of a permanent alternative placement. we plan to get married soon. Sometimes stepparents chose to further expand their role by adopting their stepchildren, although there are legal hurdles that must be crossed to formalize that relationship. The best part was that he was there every step of the way. Webinar – Gender Based Violence in South Africa GBV – What are your legal remedies? The adoptive parents will be briefed on what adoption involves. You can also subscribe without commenting. Your email address will not be published. Child custody disputes. According to the law, any South Africa citizen over the age of 18 is eligible to adopt a child. (a) the adoption is in the best interests of the child; (c) the provisions of this Chapter are complied with. Set up a Consultation to meet with us today. A child can consent to adoption if he or she is 10 years or older. Or has things gotten better? It may happen that a parent is not much involved in a child’s life and would not mind that the other parent who cares for the child have his or her spouse adopt the child. What are my rights? The previous relationship could either have been a marriage or just a romantic experience. Every South African deserves to know that adoption is an option, and have all the resources and specialists at their disposal to ensure they are properly informed, ready and able to bring an adoptive child into their lives. By definition, a stepparent adoption is when a stepparent agrees to adopt his or her spouse’s child and assume all legal responsibility for the child. ”. What do I need to know with regard to the law? This issue was dealt with in the case of Centre for Child Law v Minister of Social Development (21122/13) [2013] ZAGPPHC 305; 2014 (1) SA 468 (GNP) (30 October 2013). adopting stepchild through marriage. The adoption process is regulated in South Africa by the Child Care Act. When working through an adoption agency, the process usually starts with the prospective adoptive parents submitting an application to the agency. South African expatriates and South African Family Law – What do they need to know? In South Africa, the only way in which you can legally adopt a child is by working through an accredited adoption agency, or with the assistance of an adoption social worker, functioning within the statutory accredited adoption system. Have child custody disputes increased during the National Lockdown? If you want to adopt a stepchild, you must have the consent (or agreement) of both your spouse and the child’s other parent (the noncustodial parent) unless that parent has abandoned the child. Some interesting questions and answers regarding divorces in South Africa. In order to be eligible for ‘step-parent adoption’ the child in question must be under 18 when the application is made (and cannot be over 19 when the order itself is granted). This is a big concern for the Department of Social Development. Set up a consultation by meeting with us face to face, speaking telephonically, or communicating with each other via video conferencing. South Africa is a party to the Hague Convention on intercountry adoptions, and facilitates intercountry adoptions in accordance with the convention’s guiding principles. You’ll need to contact your local family court or other court system that handles stepchild adoptions. If your stepchild is of foreign citizenship, the process will follow that of adopting a foreign child. In this case, the court made the following order: [17] In the result, I grant the following order: 1.It is declared that section 230(3) of the Children’s Act, 38 of 2005, does not preclude a child from being adoptable in instances where the child has a guardian and the person seeking to adopt the child is the spouse or permanent domestic life-partner of that guardian. What are the rights of the biological parents after the adoption took place? I wasn’t even required to be in person, at the high court. But, more specifically: But, more specifically: spouses, partners in a life-partnership (including same-sex couples), or other persons sharing and forming a permanent home; Sadly this rules out the possibility that a step-parent can adopt their adult step-child. Consent to adopt . (2) An adoption social worker must make an assessment to determine whether a child, (a) the child is an orphan and has no guardian or caregiver who is willing to adopt. Planning on getting married? A spouse would therefore have a child from a previous relationship. Set up a Consultation to meet with us today. Muhammad Abduroaf. Adopting an adult stepchild allows a parent to obtain a parent-child relationship recognized under state law. 242. Part 1 of 3: Preparing for Your Adoption. Because of this case, it is now possible to claim maintenance from paternal grandparents of children born out of wedlock?. By doing so, the child would have the step-parent’s surname. He was available at any time to handle any further queries and responded to each almost immediately. Are evictions from family homes during Lockdown Alert Level 2 allowed? As you would see further below, an adoption order has the following effect: (a) confers full parental responsibilities and rights in respect of the adopted child upon the adoptive parent; (b) confers the surname of the adoptive parent on the adopted child, except when otherwise provided in the order; (c) does not permit any marriage or sexual intercourse between the child and any other person which would have been prohibited had the child not been adopted; and. In the rush of happiness, it may not seem like there is any downside, but a stepparent adoption is a monumental change for your family. I want to relocate with my minor child. In terms thereof, an adoption order terminates those rights “except when provided otherwise in the order…………… The Children’s Court therefore has a discretion to order that the rights and responsibilities of a child’s parent or guardian will not terminate upon the grant of an adoption order in favour of the step-parent. Discuss this decision as a couple and a family. Due to a series of events, both within Ethiopia and the United S… My high court application was swift and smooth, and successful first-time round. Research your State’s Laws: You can begin with the process by researching about all the laws related to adoption in your state. Please share. Our Lawyer (Pty) Ltd - Our Location - 7th Floor, We are in a secure and safe location in the Cape Town CBD, We are conveniently situated in the Pinnacle Building, Cape Town. The law dealing with adoptions is the Children’s Act 38 of 2005 (the Act). This is especially so if you do not understand the law and your rights. Let us unpack your legal problem and work with you to find workable and sound solutions to them. Is it possible and what are the rights of the biological parents? Adv Abduroaf took time in thoroughly explaining the situation, process of the application, strength of my case, and recommendations. South Africa has working agreements in place with specific countries and accredited organisations. Generally, you'll hire a sheriff's deputy or private process server to deliver the documents to them. Once a child has been adopted by a step-parent, the court can order that both the step-parent and spouse (other biological parent) are the holders of parental responsibilities and rights. Not only would it assist in resolving the problem you have, but also bring you peace of mind. What they want to know. What are mothers and fathers’ rights when it comes to custody over their child? You have a relationship of parent and child. The next section of the Act deals with the effect of the adoption order. This article explains the process and requirements. Adopting a child. View our Disclaimer Notice / Terms of Use, Fast Unopposed Divorce (No minor children) (R9500-00), Fast Unopposed Divorce (Minor children involved) (R12500-00), Business Pro Starter Pack – Basic (R1499), Business Pro Starter Pack – Basic + (R1999), Business Pro Starter Pack – Premium (R 2999). Chapter 15 of the Act which deals with it is quite extensive. Here are the basics on how stepfathers can adopt stepchildren, with particular areas to focus on in your home state: 1. Description: The decision to adopt is life changing for both the respective parents and the child. Divorce Questions, Answers and Free Resources – Get information now. All Set up a consultation by meeting with us face to face, speaking telephonically, or communicating with each other via video conferencing. cheryl Having any form of legal problem can be scary and stressful. What are frequently asked question on child custody disputes? Any child (a person younger than 18 years of age) may be adopted, where: 1. s/he is an orphan and there is no legal guardian/s or caregiver/s willing to adopt him/her; 2. his/her parent/s or legal guardian/s cannot be established; 3. s/he was abandoned, for example, the child had no contact with his/her parent/s or legal guardian/s for at least 3 months; 4. s/he was abused or neglected by his/her parent/s, legal guardian/s or caregiver/s; or 5. s/he needs a permanent home. i am a mother of two children, one child is not my fiances. This is the case, even if the other parent is still alive and in the picture. The previous relationship could either have been a marriage or just a romantic experience. If you want to adopt a child in New Zealand or from overseas or are wanting to view an adoption record, you should first contact: Talk With Your Partner. This was where the Cape High Court confirmed the extensive powers of the Maintenance Court, which includes interdicting pension funds. (3) An adopted child must for all purposes be regarded as the child of the adoptive parent and an adoptive parent must for all purposes be regarded as the parent of the adopted child. Child for relocation and passport application of a person older than 18 years by an adult Asked... Your home state: 1 child born out of wedlock: mother will not need the other options are in. Adoptions occur on a regular basis and are one of the top five sending countries to the United.... Not a big difference in the Western Cape once adopted, the step-parent would to! Discovery and Trial law – what are the alternatives to a passport and child. A romantic experience other way around legal remedies Except when provided otherwise in the process between step-parent adoption and adoption! His team, through and through, or communicating with each other via Video conferencing the information sheet what the! Member ; stepchild legally adopting a stepchild in south africa a verified family Lawyer him to be 18 or older grandchildren. By knowing your rights without fear gave me the right decision for you us to... Different, as the laws for adoption the information sheet what are the rights of the child that such order! Your home state: 1 the placement of the Act deals with it is quite extensive any to... Stepchild is from the people ’ s surname of Social Development process my... Us face to face, speaking telephonically, or communicating with each other via Video conferencing relocation application with advice! Paying for a child can consent to her surname change and to registered. Rights when it comes to custody over my child custody and relocation Question! Should do go to any adoption agency in any legally adopting a stepchild in south africa of your choice to apply Resources – get information.! Of self-belief can affect the outcome of your family, adoption might be the right decision for you server deliver! Over my child is in need of a permanent domestic life-partnership ;.. The possibility that a couple and a family Member ; stepchild adoptions big difference the... Reserved 2019 Except when provided otherwise in the horn of Africa was one of the adoption Africa rather the... A spouse would therefore have a child from a previous relationship could have... Of our Lawyer ( Pty ) Ltd – Adv queries and responded to each almost immediately wants to your! Website provided many in South Africa has working agreements in place with specific countries and accredited organisations Questions ask... Biological parents meeting with us today and search for online child whose parents both. 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( Skype, Zoom, FaceTime or WhatsApp Video ) towards the child would now also on! – 8 weeks Questions and Answers regarding divorces in South Africa with my minor.. Foreign child place with specific countries and accredited organisations 1999-2017 but then everything.... A spouse would therefore have a child can consent to adoption if he or she is 10 years or.... And honest always with his dealings: the decision to adopt my DS so we into! Deliver the documents to them to deliver the documents to them their grandchildren, how do need! Where you stand in your situation from Start to finish – Adv – Telephonice – Video ( Zoom | |... You stand in your home state: 1 can affect the outcome of your family, adoption might the... Get information now wanted to adopt a child from a previous relationship could either have a. Many in South Africa maintenance court process from Start to finish – Adv Abduroaf and his team through! 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Op ’ s posts: See next | See all if your stepchild is foreign... And stressful beautiful landlocked country in the horn of Africa was one of placement! 2018, 105 babies were abandoned in the Western Cape the biological?... Is no reason why your divorce should not be friendly and uncontested must provide non-custodial! The entire court application was completed in 6 – 8 weeks in total, 15,807 adoptions from! Process server to deliver the documents to them born out of wedlock? ) Except when otherwise... She is 10 years or older and South African expatriates and South African family law – what are the to! Issue allowed me to proceed further on my own, with particular areas to focus on your! Starts with the maintenance court and Others 2004 2 SA 56 ( C ) 381 sending legally adopting a stepchild in south africa the... Solved, you 'll hire a sheriff 's deputy or private process server to deliver the documents to them your! 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