Filing your Texas stepparent adoption doesn’t have to be difficult.

We understand that filing for a stepparent adoption is an extremely important time in your life. It can be stressful and the process can seem overwhelming. We guarantee that your Texas stepparent adoption documents will be accurate and that the court clerks will accept them for filing as meeting or exceeding their standards, or you get your money back – 100%. We can make this guarantee because we make it our mission to make sure our documents are complete and up-to-date with the newest court regulations. If we don’t make it right, we’ll refund your money – 100%.


Texas Adoption – Information you should know.

We know how important is it for you to do the research on filing your Texas adoption online. Our highly experienced staff will help you through the process. Please review the information below to educate yourself on filing a stepparent adoption in Texas, and then our staff will help you with any questions.


In Texas, the person filing for the stepparent adoption is referred to as the "Petitioner" and the absent parent is referred to as the "Defendant". The petitioning stepparent will file the legal adoption documents that we prepare for you with the court. This will start the adoption process. An uncontested adoption means that the other parent is not going to file additional documents with the court objecting to the adoption. 


Most of the stepparent adoptions we do for customers have one of the following circumstances:


  • The absent natural parent is deceased.
  • The absent parent has abandoned the child or children, by failing to maintain a meaningful relationship with the child(ren), and failing to provide financial support for the child(ren).  In many situations, the absent parent’s whereabouts are unknown.
  • The absent parent believes that the adoption is in the child’s best interest, and agrees to sign a consent to the adoption.


Please note that if the other parent has regular contact with the child and pays child support, you will not be able to complete a stepparent adoption in Texas unless the other parent is willing to sign a consent to the adoption.


Where will you file your stepparent adoption documents?


The adoption documents are filed in the District Court in the county where you and the child presently reside. When the stepparent adoption is finalized by the Court, your adopted child will receive a new birth certificate, showing the new parent listed on the birth certificate, and also showing the child’s new name.


Prior to filing your Petition for Adoption with the Texas District Court in your county, you must have been a bona fide resident of the state of Texas for six months prior to the filing of the petition, which residency must be stated in the petition and proved at the final hearing (Drivers License, etc.). If both parties currently reside in the state, then there is no time period required.


Grounds for the termination of parental rights.


The grounds which typically justify the termination of parental rights in a stepparent adoption involve abandonment, failure to support the child, imprisonment, certain abuse, and other grounds. The grounds for the termination of parental rights are different for each state, but all states accept the grounds of abandonment and lack of support, and some states include other grounds.


It is important to make every attempt to get the consent of the other parent in your Texas stepparent adoption, but there are times when you are unable to get that person’s consent. This is usually because the whereabouts of the other parent is unknown. .


If you are unable to get the consent of the other parent, you can still complete the adoption,as long as the grounds outlined in Texas law, § 161.001 and/or § 161.002 have been met, in that the absent parent has:


  • Voluntarily left the child alone or in the possession of another without providing adequate support of the child and remained away for a period of at least six months.
  • Failed to support the child in accordance with the parent’s ability during a period of one year ending within six months of the date of the filing of the petition.
  • Voluntarily, and with knowledge of the pregnancy, abandoned the mother of the child beginning at a time during her pregnancy with the child and continuing through the birth, failed to provide adequate support or medical care for the mother during the period of abandonment before the birth of the child, and remained apart from the child or failed to support the child since the birth.
  • Knowingly engaged in criminal conduct that has resulted in the parent’s conviction of an offense, and confinement or imprisonment and inability to care for the child for not less than two years from the date of filing the petition.
  • After being served with citation, the alleged father does not respond by timely filing an admission of paternity or a counterclaim for paternity under Chapter 160.


It is not required to terminate parental rights of a parent who is deceased.


Visitation by grandparents or the absent parent.


Most states do not have any provisions for the visitation rights of the parent losing parental rights, or the grandparents associated with that parent. The State of Texas will recognize agreements for visitation by the parent losing their parental rights, but this is typically up to the discretion of the adopting parents.


Texas District Court: Address of some Texas courts.


Our documents are for the entire State of Texas. If your county court is not listed below, then we will provided the court information when we send your documents to you.


You must file the adoption documents in the Circuit Court in the county in which you are filing. Some court addresses for larger counties are as follows:


Dallas County 101st District Court: 600 Commerce, Room 480, Dallas, 75202-4606 Phone: (214)653-7256


Tarrant County 141st District Court:401 W Belknap, Fort Worth, 76196-0224 Phone: (817) 884-1997


Collin County 199th District Court: 2210 S McDonald, Ste 534, McKinney, 75069-7602 Phone: (972) 424-1460


Travis County 126th District Court:1000 Guadalupe, Ste 436, Austin, 78701 Phone: (512) 854-9313


McLennan County 170th District Court: 501 Washington Ave, Ste 303, Waco, 76701-1380 Phone: (254) 757-5045


Houston County 349th District Court500 N Church St, Palestine, 75801 Phone: (903) 723-7415


Jefferson County 136th District Court: 1001 Pearl St, Beaumont, 77701-3707 Phone: (409) 835-8481


Bexar County 131st District Court: 100 Dolorosa St, #202, San Antonio, 78205-3028 Phone: (210) 335-2521


Nueces County 105th District Court:901 Leopard, Ste 802, Corpus Christi, 78401 Phone: (361) 888-0510


Cameron County 103rd District Court:974 E Harrison, Brownsville, 78520-7123 Phone: (956) 544-0844


Webb County 111th District Court:1110 Victoria, Ste 301, Laredo, 78042-1598 Phone: (956) 523-4223


El Paso 120th District Court:500 E San Antonio, #605, El Paso, 79901-2457 Phone: (915) 546-2103


Lubbock County 137th District Court:904 Broadway, 3rd Fl, Lubbock, 79408 Phone: (806) 775-1019


Taylor County 104th District Court:300 Oak St, Abilene, 79602-1521 Phone: (325) 674-1313


Potter County 108th District Court:501 S Fillmore St, Ste 4-A, Amarillo, 79101-2449 Phone: (806) 379-2355


Wichita County 30th District Court:900 7th St, Rm 360, Wichita Falls, 76301 Phone: (940) 766-8180


Galveston County 10th District Court:600 59th St, Rm 3204, Galveston, 77551 Phone: (409) 766-2230


Midland County 142nd District Court:200 W Wall, Ste 300, Midland, 79701-4557 Phone: (432) 688-4375


Court filing fees.


The court filing fees for an adoption in Texas are approximately $240 per child adopted.


Serving the absent parent.

In many stepparent adoptions, the absent parent may be willing to sign a consent form which consents to the termination of their parental rights and consents to the adoption. If the absent parent is willing to sign a consent this will make the process a little easier because the court will know from the beginning that all parties agree to the stepparent adoption. Many of our adoption customers don’t know the whereabouts of the other parent, or the other parent has such a disinterest that he/she just won’t sign any documents. In this situation, you will file the adoption documents and then serve the absent parent by one of the following options:


1. Whereabouts of the other parent are UNKNOWN: If you are unable to locate the absent parent after a diligent search then you can serve the parent by publication. This means that a notice is published in a local legal publication. Typically publication is once a week for 4 weeks. The publication fee for the newspaper averages around $85, but varies depending on where you live. Upon the filing of the Affidavit, the clerk shall direct that service of notice be made by publication in a newspaper of general circulation in the county in which the complaint is filed. We provide all the required documents for service by publication.


2. The parent just won’t sign, but grounds exist for the adoption: If you know the whereabouts of the other parent, but that parent won’t sign due to disinterest, you can have that parent served by the Sheriff’s department or a private process server. This can be done even if the other parent is incarcerated in jail or a federal prison.


Start your Texas Stepparent Adoption Today!


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