Updated: Jun 14
Many families are eager to complete a stepparent adoption even after the child has become an adult.
However, surprisingly, my law office mostly receives calls from adult children who want their stepparent to adopt them.
Nebraska allows adult stepparent adoptions, to most people’s surprise.
So if you never got around to completing the stepparent adoption when the child was a minor, it’s not too late! You can still do it.
Benefits of adult stepparent adoption
One of the great benefits of adopting a stepchild even after they reach the age of majority is that they will be able to inherit from the stepparent.
If the stepparent adoption is not finalized, the stepchild is not recognized as the stepparent’s legal child. If the stepparent passes away without a Last Will and Testament, the stepchild will not inherit anything from that stepparent.
If the stepparent passes away with a Last Will and Testament, they are able to leave a gift to the stepchild in the Will. But the stepchild is still not considered that stepparent’s heir.
2- It Solidifies what’s always been true; you are the parent
Another great benefit of an adult stepparent adoption is that it solidifies what’s always been true for that child: you are their parent.
I had the honor of finalizing an adult stepparent adoption for a 36-year-old woman who was married with three children of her own. She wanted her stepdad to adopt her and he did. It was wonderful to be a part of that process.
If you are thinking about stepparent adoption for an adult child, it can be done in Nebraska.