Adoption (Family Law) by Kansas Statutes and Cases
The study of adoption is very important as it influences millions of lives in the United States, who are an element of the adoption process. For instance, the birth parents who put their children for adoption; the children who are adopted; and the parents who adopt children. It is also believed that adoption influences approximately 3% of Americans who initially think of adoption but later on decide against it. For instance, Allen P. Fisher (2003) writes, "Adoption is certainly a very common occurrence in the United States and in much of the world today. No official and complete counts of adoptions exist, but estimates are that about 4% of Americans are adopted; about half of these have been adopted by persons not related to them by birth
." Allen goes on to write, "A recent national survey of 1416 Americans found that nearly two thirds of the respondents (64%) had a personal experience with adoption, meaning that someone in their family or among their close friends had been adopted, had adopted a child, or had placed a child for adoption (Allen P. Fisher 2003)."
It is worth noting that while adoption is not uncommon, the adoption process is perhaps the most complicated and full of conflicting interests amongst all other human services. For instance, the social workers of an adoption agency and the attorneys concurrently represent the birth and adoptive parents, on a regular basis. Also, adoption agencies maintain that they offer impartial counseling on crisis pregnancy to expecting women (Anne Babb, 1999).
This study explores the Kansas Statutes related to adoption so as to comprehensively understand the legal procedures and the application of rules and regulations, which the State of Kansas applies to various situations.
Review of Literature
Basic Statutes of Adoption in Kansas
(1) Statute 59-2129: Reveals the eligibility criterion for adoption
The law clearly states that when an autonomous adoption takes place, the permission of both the parents is absolutely vital, unless consent of one of the parents in established (by the law) to be unnecessary. If the parents are not alive then the permission should be taken from the legally-authorized-guardian. If a guardian has not been legally authorized then the court has complete authority over the adoption process. In case the adoption is taking place through an agency, then a legally empowered agent of the adoption agency can give permission for the adoption. Lastly, Statute 59-2129 asserts that the approval of the child being adopted is considered to be vital by the law, if the child being adopted is equal to or more than 14 years of age and has a sensible mind (Kansas Adoption Statute, 2005).
(2) Statute 59-2136(h): reveals the circumstances that disregard the permission of the birth parents
The permission of the birth parents (either the father or the mother or both father and mother) is not considered to be eligible when the following misdeeds have been committed on the child by the father and/or mother (Kansas Adoption Statute, 2005):
The child has been deserted or deserted by the parents
The child has lost all contact and support from the parents
The parents are unsuitable or unable to give permission
The mother had not been supported by the father during her pregnancy
The mother had been abandoned by the father
The father had raped the mother
For 2 successive years, the parents had failed to take on their parental responsibilities
Statute 59-2114(b); 59-2116: Reveals when permission can be carried out
The father of the adoptee can give permission at any time.
The mother has to wait for at least 12 hours after the birth of the child to give her permission and it should be executed in less than 6 months otherwise an adoption appeal can be reported (Kansas Adoption Statute, 2005).
Statute 59-2114; 59-2115: Reveals the procedure necessary to carry out the permission
The permission given by the parents should be admitted before either a judge or a legally empowered agent of the adoption agency and it should be given in writing.
While a minor parent is entitled to give permission, the counsel should be present when the permission is being given in writing and the counsel should also be present when the actual execution of the adoption is taking place (Kansas Adoption Statute, 2005).
Statute 59-2114: Reveals the condition for the cancellation of the permission
Unless the party, which gave permission for the adoption, establishes that the permission had not been free and transparent, the permission is considered final after its execution (Kansas Adoption Statute, 2005).
(3) Putative Fathers Laws in Kansas
Statute 59-2136: Reveals the registry/fatherhood Conditions to entertain notification:
The notification of the execution of adoption proceedings given to the person recognized as either the father or potential father
The official or unofficial recognition or possible affirmation of fatherhood shall only be decided by the court
The parental rights of the father will be ended, unless, the acknowledged father appears before the court, declares the custodial rights of the child (Kansas Adoption Statute, 2005).
(4) Statute 59-2113 & 59-2138-59-2142: Reveals the law on Adult Adoption in Kansas
The statutes for adult adoption can be summarized by stating that the permission of the adoptee and the partner of the requester are necessary for an adult adoption (Kansas Adoption Statute, 2005).
(a) Statute 59-2113: Reveals the eligibility criterion for Adoption
The procedure of adoption given from "Kansas Statute of Adoption" 59-2111 to 59-2142 are considered to be an obligation for any adult, or a jointly married couple, who wish to adopt any minor or adult, however, in case of a married couple, the permission of both is considered an obligation (Kansas Adoption Statute, 2005).
(b) Kansas Statute of Adoption: From 59-2111 to 59-2143
(i) Statute 59-2138: Reveals the venue for adoption
It is vital for either the adoptee or the adults adopting the "adult" to be currently living in that county (Kansas Adoption Statute, 2005).
(ii) Statute 59-2139: Reveals the petition for adoption
The person wanting the adoption of the adult will have to file a formal-request and will have to provide the following information (Kansas Adoption Statute, 2005):
"(1) The name, residence and address of the petitioner;
(2) The name, residence, address and date of birth of the adult to be adopted;
(3) Whether the petitioner or adult to be adopted is married and if so, the name, residence and address of the spouse;
(4) The facts showing the reasons for the adoption;
(5) Whether one or both of the parents of the adult to be adopted are living and the name, residence and address of those living so far as known to the petitioner or the adult to be adopted; and (6) Whether or not any change of name is requested.
(b) The written consents required by K.S.A. 59-2140, and amendments thereto, and the accounting required by K.S.A. 59-2121 shall be filed with the petition for adoption."
(iii) Statute 59-2140: Reveals the permission process for adoption
Permission of the spouse of the requester is necessary, however, if the spouse if disabled then the permission of the legally-empowered-guardian is necessary.
Permission of the adult, who is about to be adopted, is necessary, however, if the adoptee is disabled then the permission of the legally-empowered-guardian is necessary (Kansas Adoption Statute, 2005).
(iv) Statute 59-2141: Reveals the Notice and hearing procedures
Through order, the court will choose the right time and place for the trial on the petition. The trial might take place either with notice or without notice and it is also possible that the court might commence the trail immediately.
The court might give the order that the notification of the trial should be given to the parents of the adult about to be adopted and might also call for notification to the consenting group, if not waived (Kansas Adoption Statute, 2005).
(v) 59-2142: Copy of verdict to previous parents
If the verdict of adoption is given, then either the petitioner or the lawyer of the petitioner will have to mail an endorsed copy of the verdict to the previous parents of the adult who has been adopted. However, this is done only when the parents had no knowledge about the events that had taken place and when they can be situated for first-class mailing services.
Furthermore, the petitioner or the lawyers of the petitioner either will have to give evidence of the mail posted to the court or will have to give an official-declaration giving genuine reasons for nonconformity, only when the reasons from the certified proceedings are not apparent. It is important to note that if the petitioner or the lawyers of the petitioner has been unsuccessful in giving the notice necessary, it shall not cancel the adoption (Kansas Adoption Statute, 2005).
(5) Kansas State Regulation of Adoption Expenses
Statute 59-2121(a): Expenses of Birth Parent Permitted
An evenhanded cost for the purpose of executing legal and additional practiced services.
Genuine expenditures, which includes the health expenses for the child and…