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Do children have to consent to adoption in Georgia?

Adoptions can be exciting for prospective parents. After all, they are, in many cases, fulfilling a dream they have had for some time. Having a child to raise may have even been a dream they feared would never be realized. They generally can't wait to have their new family member come and begin to share their lives. In other circumstances, adoptions are done as a way to help legally bind a blended family together when one partner has a child from a previous relationship. But what about the children in these situations? If they are old enough, they may have their own ideas and feelings about the process.

While most children who do not have families may well hope to be adopted, there is some chance that a child may have an objection to entering a new situation, whether out of fear of something new or of losing certain ties to the past or to a biological parent. Do children have any say in who adopts them, or even if they are adopted at all?

In Georgia, any child that is 14 years old or older must consent to the adoption for the process to be finalized. This means that the procedure for many teenagers will require both parties to be willing to create the legal parent-child bond. It should also be remembered that an adoptive parent in the state must be at least 10 years older than the child he or she wishes to adopt.

Obviously, even children younger than 14 may have feelings about an adoption. It is always good for prospective parents to ensure that kids who are old enough to have separate identities are a good fit for the family they are joining. Until the age of 14, however, children can be adopted without their legal consent.

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