Jay & Campbell

Adoption

Private Adoption

Domestic infant adoption has changed a great deal in the past few decades. Many children being adopted are older than infants or have special needs. Openness in adoption is now the norm. As openness has increased, so has “self- matching”, whereby birth parents and prospective adoptive parents choose each other without the traditional intermediary at the beginning of the relationship, such as an adoption agency or attorney. It is important to retain an attorney as soon as possible to create a smooth process.

Jay & Campbell coordinates with adoption attorneys and agencies all over the country to facilitate adoptions and ensure compliance with the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children (ICPC).

Experienced litigators, the attorneys at Jay & Campbell handle complex cases and are often brought in to assist with appeals or contested adoptions in both private and public (dependency/foster care) proceedings.

If you are the biological father (i.e., a "putative father") of a child being placed for adoption and you oppose the adoption plan, it is critical that you are proactive in protecting your parental rights. Courts look at whether a father has supported a mother during her pregnancy, filed with the Florida Putative Father Registry, paid child support, and has sought to develop and maintain a relationship with his child.

Jay & Campbell has a special focus in representing foster parents, caregivers and relatives trying to adopt children from the Florida foster care system. We have represented the Florida Department of Children and Families in prosecuting child abuse, biological parents working towards reunification, and private adoption agencies. Our attorneys are trained as guardians ad litem, mediators, and we have also fostered and adopted children ourselves. Our 360-degree view of the child welfare system in Florida makes Jay & Campbell a uniquely qualified rapid response team that will help you navigate the often complicated and unpredictable journey through the foster care system. We finalize foster adoptions and have successfully advocated for prospective adoptive parents in interventions, subsidy negotiations and competing adoptive placements in dependency court. We often provide delicate, behind-the-scenes guidance in cases that are in crucial, defining moments. For more information about what we do, please book a free consultation here.

Stepparent & Relative Adoptions

Florida law streamlines the adoption process for stepparent and relative adoptions so that they may be completed quickly and at a relatively low cost. Generally, home studies and background checks are not required for stepparent and relative adoptions. If you are ready to finalize your commitment to the child you care for every day, we should be honored to help you through the process. Any desired name change is part of this legal process.

Your attorneys at Jay & Campbell have experience with many challenging or unusual stepparent and relative adoptions, including contested, arrangements forgiving child support, adoptions arising out of guardianship, and adoptions arising out of foreign surrogacy/gestational carrier agreements.

Adult Adoption

You’re never too old to have a forever family. Adult adoptions are even simpler than stepparent and relative adoptions, and are also some of the sweetest. We’ve finalized adoptions where the adoptive parent held a grandchild in their arms as they formalized their commitment to the now-adult child they had parented for decades.

Although adult adoption is typically a simple matter, your attorney should be specialized in adoption so they can efficiently handle any complications that may arise. For example, some adult adoptions involve a previous termination of parental rights, legal competency issues, inheritance and trust fund matters, the consent of spouses and parents, and previous court cases and birth certificates in other state jurisdictions.

Readoption

Domestication of a foreign adoption, often referred to as “readoption,” is critical for internationally adopted children who entered on IR-4 vias. In those cases, it is the court hearing date and resulting order, not entry into the United State, that makes the child a United States citizen.

Internationally adopted children who enter the United States on IR-3 visas becomes citizens automatically upon entry. Even for those children, however, it may be wise to domesticate the foreign adoption. In Florida, domesticating the foreign adoption facilitates applying for a Florida Certificate of Foreign Birth, which is more easily accepted than foreign birth certificates. In some instances, medical doctors may advise families that their child may be a different age, or even a different gender, than what the child’s foreign birth certificate indicates. In those instances, adoptive parents may wish to domesticate the foreign adoption so they may apply for a birth certificate with the correct information.

We are experienced at intercountry adoptions, from readoption, to applying or amending documents with the Social Security Administration (social security card), USCIS (Certificate of Citizenship) and the Department of State (passports).