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How Can A Stepparent Adopt?

How Can A Stepparent Adopt?

If you want to adopt your stepchild, fill out the forms below.

You can get the Instructions and Forms you need at your county courthouse.

Or you can download them from the Idaho Courts Self Help Center (see the form links below – opens in a new window).

Description Form Needed Purpose
Adoption Request ADOPT-200 This paper tells the judge about you and the child you want to adopt. Fill it out and file it with the court clerk in the county where you live.
Adoption Agreement ADOPT-210 This paper tells the judge you agree to adopt the child. If the child is 12 years old or older, he or she must say if she or he agrees. Fill out this paper, but do not sign it until the judge says so.
Adoption Order ADOPT-215 The judge signs this paper if your adoption is approved. After the judge signs it, file this paper with the court clerk.

After you fill out these papers, take them to the court clerk in the county where you live. If you have a lawyer or are using an agency, take the papers to them.

The court will need other papers, too:

  • The child’s parent’s agreement to the adoption (ask a social worker or a lawyer to help you with this) , or
  • The death certificate of the child’s parent.

If the child’s parent does not agree, then you must start a lawsuit against the parent.

In some adoptions, adoptive parents make an agreement to allow a child’s parent to continue to have contact with the child after the adoption. If you make such an agreement, use Form ADOPT-310.

In every adoption, an investigator writes a report. This report gives important information to the judge about the adopting parents and the child. The investigator will ask you questions, and you will have to fill out some papers (see below). When the report is done, the investigator will file it with the court and send you a copy. Now you can ask the court clerk for a date for your adoption hearing.

Go to court on the date of your hearing. You will need to bring the following:

  • The child you want to adopt.
  • Adoption Agreement (form ADOPT-210)
  • Adoption Order (form ADOPT-215)
  • A camera, if you want a photo of you and your child with the judge.

NOTE: All Idaho courts use the same basic set of forms. But some courts have special local forms, too. To see if you will need any special, local forms, contact your court clerk or check your court’s Web site. The forms may be posted on their site. If not, the site will list the address and phone number of your local courthouse.