Step-Parent Adoption

Adopting a partner’s child

An individual may, with the consent of their partner, apply to the court to adopt a child of that partner.

How it works

In order to qualify, you and your partner must be legally married or common-law, the child must live with the applicant, and the child must be cared for by the applicant. Children in a step-parent adoption who are 12 years of age or older must consent to the adoption. In most cases, the non-custodial birth parent of the child must also consent to the adoption. Step-parent adoptions are processed through court with the assistance of a lawyer. Home studies are not required in step-parent adoptions, unless they are ordered by the court. All costs related to this type of adoption are the responsibility of the applicants.

Note: Children being adopted by a step parent may face some of the same challenges or have similar questions connected to adoption as other adoptees do regarding their background or history with a biological parent they may not have known or was not a significant part of their life.