You probably never thought about a Louisiana adult adoption lawyer existing. Welp, here I am! Adult adoption requirements in Louisiana can be confusing. I try to make it a little easier to understand. That includes explaining why adult adoptions are a good idea.
You can dive into the adult adoption rights in Louisiana and their requirements in a previous post. If you're a step-parent but want to adopt your step-child who is under 18, then head on over to this article.
Step-families and chosen families take the leap after the "child" turns 18 and formalize their family....legally. This is where Louisiana adult adoptions come into play. So long as you aren't wanting someone to adopt you as an adult to skirt some legal issues like immigration status or special needs trust, you will likely get an adoption approved.
But what about your name? Does it automatically change with your Louisiana adoption petition?
It's a valid question. After all, you're grown and likely have a professional career. Your current name is your brand. You may even be married and don't want to change it. Perhaps you just don't want to go through the hassle of changing legal documents to this new name.
An adult adoption does not automatically change your name. It just solidifies your legal relationship to your adopted parent so that you can inherit from them and have legal rights together.
You've been adopted. You want to change your name to reflect your adopted parents last names, even if you're a "grown up". How do you do it? You have to file a Petition to Change Your Name in the court where you were you born or where you live. You submit your driver's license, tell the Court you aren't trying to skirt legal proceedings like criminal charges or bankruptcy (they look by the way so don't lie), your adult adoption court order with a legal pleading.
Next, the District Attorney's Office has to answer your petition either approving or denying it.
If you were born out of state, many state's Vital Records require a court order and Act of Congress. So if you've been adopted and want to change your birth certificate, you do need to file an adult adoption AND a name change, asking for an Act of Congress from your Court.
After that, you submit the application with your documents for your birth state. Read the fine print: some states like Georgia don't accept checks. You must submit a cashier's check or money order in the exact amount.
This is a personal choice. Changing your birth certificate as an adult adoptee amends it here in Louisiana. After you submit your birth certificate application, the state will send you your amended birth certificate that your adopted parent(s) have to sign.
If you choose not to amend your birth certificate, it does not affect your legal status as a family. However, it may make it more difficult to show your current family situation. Make sure you keep your certified court order in a very safe place. This is important down the road if you ever have issues with inheritance and probating wills.
Feel free to give our assistant Brielle a call or text us at 985-265-7069 to get pricing information or schedule an affordable paid consultation meeting request here. We can handle the adult adoption, adult name changes, and birth certificate amendments (in Louisiana and nation wide).
This article was originally published 01/17/2024 and is copyright and intellectual property of Amber Sheppard and Sheppard Law PLLC. Please do not take action or refrain from taking action without first speaking to a licensed attorney who knows your set of facts.