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second parent

adoption attorney

Client-Focused Second Parent Adoption Attorney Works with LGBTQ+ and Other Couples to Help Facilitate Second Parent Adoption in the Washington, D.C. Metropolitan Area

Second parent adoption has in recent years become a means for unmarried same-sex and heterosexual couples in a committed relationship to ensure that both partners have equal parental rights to children being raised by the couple. Second parent adoptions are frequently used where one partner brings their own biological or adopted children into the relationship, or where a child is born during the relationship that is genetically related to only one of the partners. When you and your partner are ready to legally confirm your and your children’s status as a family unit, a second parent adoption attorney can help you through the legal process in Washington, DC and the surrounding areas of Maryland.

Turn to Attorney Michele Zavos to ensure that your family’s second parent adoption process proceeds smoothly. For nearly four decades, Michele has represented LGBTQ+ and other couples through all kinds of family law matters, including helping couples to establish and grow families and secure the legal rights of both partners or spouses to the children they are raising together. Michele has been a pioneer in the expansion of family rights; and she has extensive experience in developing unique, effective legal solutions for even the most complex family arrangements and situations.

You and your family deserve to have your relationship recognized by the law. Call and speak with Attorney Michele Zavos about your legal rights and to learn more about the process of a second parent adoption in Washington, D.C. and the surrounding Maryland area, so that you and your partner can both formalize your status as the parents of your children.

Why Pursue Second Parent Adoption?

Since the mid-1990s, second-parent adoptions have been utilized in Washington, D.C. and Maryland by unmarried same-sex and heterosexual couples to help ensure that both partners have parental rights to the children that they are raising together as a family.

A second-parent adoption may be used by a same-sex couple where one partner is bringing their biological or already adopted children into the relationship; when the couple chooses to have a committed relationship, the other partner may wish to cement their relationship with the couple’s children through a second-parent adoption.

     “michele was actively involved
in the effort to make
second parent adoptions a
routine legal practice.”

Second parents adoptions might also be used by lesbian couples where one partner conceives and gives birth to a child through sperm donation or by gay couples where one partner donates sperm to a gestational carrier, where obtaining a pre-birth order establishing the legal parentage of both parents is not possible or the couple did not obtain a pre-birth order prior to their child’s birth.

Finally, second-parent adoptions are sometimes used by same-sex couples who face difficulties in finding an adoption agency to work with. Some private adoption agencies refuse to work with LGBTQ+ individuals altogether, while other agencies may only refuse to work with a same-sex couple who is adopting together but will work with an individual prospective parent regardless of their sexual orientation. If a child is adopted under these circumstances, the legal parent’s partner or spouse can later obtain rights to the couple’s children through a second-parent adoption.

How a Second Parent Adoption Attorney from Michele Zavos Law Can Help Your Family

For same-sex couples in committed relationships who wish to recognize the contributions of both partners to raising the family, second parent adoption may be the best means of providing legal rights to a partner who is not already a legal parent of the couple’s children.

If you and your family believe that a second parent adoption might be right for you, second-parent adoption attorney Michele Zavos and Zavos Law can help you with:

  • Explaining your family’s rights and options for using a second-parent adoption to establish parental rights for both members of a couple
  • Identifying potential legal issues in the way of a second parent adoption, such as the potential need for terminating the parental rights of a child’s other biological or legal parent, or complications posed by a surrogacy or gestational carrier agreement
  • Preparing an adoption petition and other legal or court documents necessary to complete the adoption process
  • Representing you and your family in court to ensure that your adoption petition is granted

If you have questions about the second parent adoption process, Michele Zavos Law can give you the answers and assistance that you need.

If you are considering pursuing a second-parent adoption, reach out to the seasoned second parent adoption attorney, Michele Zavos, for a consultation to discuss your rights and options for seeking to adopt your spouse’s or partner’s child or children and legally establish your status as a parent.


Can unmarried same-sex partners seek a second-parent adoption?
Yes. Second parent adoption is a common procedure where same-sex partners are in a committed relationship but not married, and are raising the biological or adopted children of one of the partners together. In these circumstances, the partners may choose to have the other partner adopt the couple’s child or children so that both partners may have equal legal rights.
Why do you need an attorney for a second parent adoption?
Although it may not seem necessary, a partner or spouse seeking a second-parent adoption of their partner’s or spouse’s child or children may need legal assistance when an adoption poses complex legal issues, such as when the child’s or children’s other biological or legal parent still has parental rights. A second-parent adoption attorney can explain your legal rights and options and what the process of adoption might look like for you and your family.

let michele zavos help to complete your family.

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