American families come in all shapes and sizes. While some children are raised by their aunts and uncles, others live in single-parent households and still others are brought up by their grandparents. Not all parents are fit or able to properly care for their children and grandparents may need to step in to help. If you are a grandparent raising a grandchild, you may find it beneficial to go through the legal adoption process.
Although it is not required to adopt your grandchild, doing so may grant you certain rights and legal advantages. Once you have adopted your grandchild, you will be able to determine who you wish to care for them if something should happen to you. It also gives the child stability, as they will not have to be sent back and forth between caregivers. Adoptive grandparents have the ability to make certain decisions regarding the child, such as what doctor they go to or what school they attend. Furthermore, adopted grandchildren will have better access and legal rights to their grandparents estate if and when their grandparents pass away.
There can be definite challenges when raising your grandchildren. You may decide that you have already raised your children and should be able to enjoy time to yourself. Yet, caring for a grandchild can be extremely rewarding. There may be financial assistance programs available to help you care for the children as well. Since each situation has unique circumstances, it is important to carefully decide whether adoption is right for your family.
This information is intended to educate and should not be taken as legal advice.