Wanting to bring a child into one’s home is a noble cause. There are a number of reasons to utilize the adoption process. The state of Massachusetts does, however, have strict guidelines when it comes to this family law matter, particularly in regard to who is eligible to adopt and how the adoption process is to work.

Who is able to adopt children, according to state laws? For starters, any individual requesting to adopt a child has to be of legal age, which, in Massachusetts, is 18 or older, and must be a current resident of the state or attempting to adopt a child who is currently a resident. Married, unmarried and single individuals are all also encouraged and able to adopt. 

In order to adopt a child in the age range of infant to 14 years old, there is a live-in requirement that must be met — unless the court chooses to waive this stipulation. As it stands, a child in this age group must live with his or her potential adoptive parent for six or more months before he or she can be adopted. Finally, those wishing to adopt must use an approved agency, be requesting to adopt a step-child or a blood relative, or have been designated as a guardian by the child’s now deceased parent.

Adoption is not an easy process to get through, and it can take longer than one is expecting. While trying at times, it can prove worth it in the end. Massachusetts residents who are getting ready to add to their families through adoption can turn to an experienced family law attorney who will be able to guide them through the ins and outs of the process.