divorce after adoption

What Happens If You Get Divorced After Adopting a Child?

There are very few things that make divorce any easier, but there are plenty of circumstances that make it more complicated. If you and your ex-partner adopted a child together or you adopted their biological child, you might be wondering how that affects your divorce. Learn more about complications you may face and how you can protect yourself.

It’s crucial to prepare for every possible outcome when facing divorce. That’s where our team shines. Call Nowell Law Firm at 864-707-1785 to schedule a consultation now.

How the Courts View Your Adopted Child

The first factor to consider is how the court will look at your adopted child compared to a biological child. The good news is that the court does not consider your adopted child any different from a biological child. Getting divorced after adoption does not reverse the adoption or put either party at a disadvantage.

This is true whether you and your partner adopted a child together or one of you adopted the other’s biological child. Depending on the situation you’re in, this may come as good news or bad news.

After adopting their spouse’s biological child, some adoptive parents want to void the adoption when the marriage ends in divorce. This would allow them to avoid paying child support. The same can happen when a couple adopts a child together—if one partner pushed harder for the adoption than the other, the other party may wonder if they can avoid financial or parental responsibility for the child.

The bottom line is – the fact that your child is adopted will not change how the court handles issues with child custody and child support. They will be treated the same as if they were your biological child.

Custody Concerns

When it comes to deciding child custody, the court will decide what is in the best interests of your child—just like they do with any child of divorce. Generally, the court prefers a custody agreement that allows the child to have meaningful time with both parents. This gives the child the opportunity to maintain a strong relationship with both parents.

However, there are situations that call for a schedule that gives one parent primary custody. If one parent works an irregular schedule or has a much more demanding work schedule than the other, the parent with more time may have more parenting time. If one parent has been the primary caretaker for the entirety of the child’s life, it may be in everyone’s best interest to maintain that arrangement.

Child Support

In South Carolina, child support is based on the combined income of the parents. A wide variety of factors contribute to child support calculations, including the amount of children shared by the couple, who provides health insurance, the cost of childcare, and significant medical expenses. Child support is calculated the same for adopted and biological children.

Preparing for the Needs of Your Child

While the legal aspects of your divorce may not be affected by the presence of an adopted child, you may find that your child faces unique challenges during and after the divorce. Adopted children may sometimes feel a sense of loss or exclusion in the family. They often struggle with divorce as their sense of stability is lost.

Challenges vary between children adopted by both parents and children who have one biological and one adopted parent. Regardless, it’s important to plan for these needs and ensure that their mental and emotional needs are met. You may wish to get them into individual counseling or attend family counseling as a group. Even if your marriage is ending, it’s crucial that you and your ex-partner work together for the benefit of your children.

Carefully consider the needs of your adopted child while negotiating a custody agreement. If at all possible, choose a shared custody agreement that maintains the child’s relationship with both parents. Be ready for mood swings, outbursts, and other behavioral concerns as your child adjusts to their new normal. With care and work, you can help your child work through this time.

Explore Your Legal Options with Nowell Law Firm

A divorce calls for extensive preparation and an attorney you trust. Find out more about how the Nowell Law Firm can help you get the outcome you want. Call us at 864-707-1785 or contact us online to set up a consultation with our team now.

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