I want to adopt an adult in Texas.
I want to adopt an adult in Texas.
This toolkit tells you how to file a petition for adoption of an adult in Texas. FORMS ARE INCLUDED.
This toolkit includes:
- Instructions & Forms you can use to file a petition for adoption of an adult.
- Use the first set of instructions and forms (Set A) if the adult does not want a name change.
- Use the second set of instructions (Set B) if the adult wants a name change.
- Frequently Asked Questions about adult adoptions in Texas.
- Use our Legal Help Finder to search for a lawyer referral service, legal aid office or self-help center in your area.
- Check our Legal Clinic Calendar to learn if there is an upcoming legal clinic near you.
- Use Ask a Question to chat online with a lawyer or law student.
WARNING! The information and forms in this toolkit are not legal advice and are not a substitute for the help of a lawyer. It’s a good idea to talk with a lawyer about your particular situation.
Any adult can file an adoption case for another adult if:
- The adult requesting the adoption resides in Texas, and
- The adult to be adopted consents to the adoption
- District court, or
- Statutory county court with jurisdiction over family law cases.
Start an adult adoption case by filing an Original Petition for Adoption of an Adult.
Yes. When you file for adoption of an adult, you must usually pay a “filing fee.” The fee may vary by county. Contact the district clerk’s office or the statutory county court with jurisdiction over family law cases in the county where you (the petitioner) live to learn the fees.
If you don’t have enough money to pay the fees, you can ask a judge to waive the fees by completing and filing a Statement of Inability to Afford Payment of Court Costs. Read this short article to learn more: Court Fees & Fee Waivers.
The person asking the court for the adoption order is the “petitioner.”
If the petitioner is married, then both spouses must join together as petitioners in the adoption case.
Note: Even though the spouse of a petitioner in an adoption case must also join in the adoption case as a petitioner, the spouse may ask the court not to grant the adoption to both spouses, and only to one.
An adult adoption can be granted in Texas without listing any “respondent” parties.
Because the person to be adopted is an adult, there is no requirement to give notice of the adoption to the adult’s biological parents or to bring in the adult’s biological parents as parties to the case.
No. Adult adoptions in Texas do not require an order terminating parental rights.
Yes. The adult being adopted must consent to the adoption in a writing filed with the court.
Yes. Both the petitioner(s) and the adult to be adopted must go to court for the adoption hearing.
Note: If you have a really good reason that either the petitioner(s) or the adult to be adopted cannot attend the hearing, you can ask the court to make an exception that attendance in court for either party to the adoption is not required. This exception is rare and only applies if you have “good cause” and if the judge signs a written order giving permission that either party to the adoption is not required to go to court for the adoption.
An adult adoption:
Makes the adopted adult the son or daughter of the adoptive parent(s)
Creates the adopted adult’s right to inherit from the adoptive parents
The adopted adult no longer inherits from or through the adopted adult’s biological parents.
Can change the adopted adult’s name (if requested)
Note: An adult adoption will not impact immigration rights or grant benefits under immigration law.
An adult adoption will not be approved (ordered) if the judge believes:
The adoption is being requested to avoid a legal obligation (such as paying a debt)
A party to the adoption is not voluntarily agreeing to the adoption (for example, due to a disability or duress)