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4 Types of Kansas Adoption Laws Every Parent Should Know

And How They Could Impact Your Adoption

Adoption is a personal and emotional process. It is also a legal one. Each state has its own unique laws that guide the adoption process and, while it’s not your job to know the minutia of Kansas adoption laws — that’s for your adoption attorney and specialist to handle — it is helpful to have a grip on what’s happening during the process.

If you intend to adopt across state lines, you may want to familiarize yourself with both states’ adoption laws. If you have any questions about Kansas adoption laws, you can request free information from American Adoptions to learn more.

While this article is not intended and should not be taken as legal advice,  it can serve as a basic overview of some important domestic adoption laws in Kansas and how they may affect your adoption. To get you started, here are four of the basic Kansas adoption laws you should be aware of:

Who Can Adopt in Kansas?

Your ability to adopt will depend in part on the type of adoption you choose, the professional you work with, and your ability to meet certain screening requirements. Kansas adoption laws also outline certain requirements for hopeful adoptive parents:

  • Age: While there is no law specifying a minimum age to adopt in Kansas, the adoptive parent(s) must be at least ten years older than the child being adopted.

  • Marriage: Single parents may petition to adopt on their own. A married individual can’t adopt on their own without the consent of their spouse. This also applies to people who are separated but not formally divorced from their legal spouses and those who wish to adopt their spouse’s biological child through a stepparent adoption.

  • Sexual Orientation: There are no specific adoption laws in Kansas regarding adoption and same-sex couples. However, new legislation does create room for some organizations to deny services to single or LGTBQ+ people. Always check to make sure an agency will support you in the adoption process.

All prospective adoptive parents must be approved to adopt through the home study process, which requires clearances including Kansas criminal background checks and more.

Potential adoptive parents must also meet the individual requirements of the adoption professional that the wish to work with, as well as the requirements for the type of adoption they wish to pursue, be it domestic, international or foster care adoption.

Who Can Be Adopted in Kansas?

In Kansas, any minor whose parents have had their parental rights terminated may be adopted.

When a prospective birth mother makes an adoption plan for her baby, she must wait to consent to the voluntary termination of her parental rights until at least 12 hours after the birth. The birth father may consent at any point within six months prior to the birth, in accordance with Kansas adoption laws.

Consent to the adoption and termination of parental rights must be issued in writing. The consenting parents must be represented by independent legal counsel (financed by the adoptive parents) and be fully informed about the adoption process by the attorney.

Adults and children over the age of 14 may also be adopted with their consent.

Kansas Adoption Laws for Advertising

“Advertising,” in the adoption world, means finding adoption opportunities for hopeful parents and prospective birth mothers. Only licensed child-placing agencies are allowed to advertise to expectant mothers looking to place a child in Kansas. This is done through a variety of means. American Adoptions, for instance, helps families create print and video profiles that are then shown to prospective birth mothers across the country.

For adoptive parents, this simply means that it is important to work with a licensed agency, like American Adoptions, to search for an adoption opportunity. Families who want to complete an independent adoption should work closely with their adoption attorney to ensure they are not breaking any laws when looking for a prospective birth mother to adopt from.

For this reason, and for their historically predatory practices, adoption facilitators are also illegal in the state of Kansas.

Kansas Adoption Laws for Birth Parent Expenses

Payment in exchange for the placement of a child is illegal, in Kansas and in every other state in the U.S. However, according to adoption laws in Kansas, reasonable living expenses may be paid for the expectant mother to help offset the financial pressures of pregnancy.  

The adoptive parents are financially responsible for:

  • Medical expenses of the birth mother and child in relation to prenatal care, pregnancy and birth

  • Reasonable living expenses for the birth mother to support her during the pregnancy, which may include help with rent, bills, groceries and more

  • The birth parent(s)’ attorney fees

Expenses paid by the adoptive parents to the birth parent(s) are determined on a case-by-case basis, and those requested expenses must be deemed reasonable by a Kansas judge. Some expectant mothers will have greater financial need than others, so it’s reasonable that their necessary living expenses may be greater. When you work with American Adoptions, your adoption specialist will help you understand these living expenses and set a budget that you are comfortable with.  

Kansas adoption laws do not require the birth family to repay any paid expenses if they decide to parent, which can make adoption a risky investment in some cases — but not with American Adoptions. Our industry-leading Risk-Sharing program financially protects adoptive parents in the event of a disrupted adoption.

These are a few of the most pertinent adoption laws in Kansas. Over the course of the adoption process, you’ll encounter many more. But don’t let that churn up feelings of stress and anxiety — your adoption specialist will be there the whole way to guide you.

To learn more about adoption laws in Kansas, or to understand which laws may apply in your individual circumstances, request more free adoption information

Disclaimer
Information available through these links is the sole property of the companies and organizations listed therein. America Adoptions, Inc. provides this information as a courtesy and is in no way responsible for its content or accuracy.