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Stepparent Adoptions in Arizona

Stepparent adoptions tend to not be as complicated as an agency or private placement adoption.  There is no certification process, placement study, or accounting review, but you will have to have the biological, non-spousal, parent to terminate their parental rights. 

A stepparent must have been married to the birth parent for at least 1 year and lived with the child for at least 6 months before applying.

Unless the child is a ward of the court, a stepparent does not need:

  • To be certified
  • A placement suitability study
  • An accounting review

Steps for Filing for adoption:

  1. File a petition to adopt
  2. Provide notice of hearing
  3. Obtain a termination of parental rights of the other biological parent
    • A County Attorney is not required to represent you in a termination proceeding.
    • If you are not able to locate them or they refuse, you can petition the court for a judicial termination
    • If they are deceased, this is not required.
  4. A home visit by a state-appointed official
  5. Adoption hearing
    • The child must be present at the adoption hearing unless otherwise ordered by the court
  6. Final order entered
    • It is subject to appeal

Related Resources:

State Statute - ARS § 8-112(D)

State Statute - ARS § 8-114

State Statute - ARS § 8-107