Adoptions are permanent, so prospective adoptive parents should understand exactly what they are taking on before beginning the process. Adoption will establish all the legal rights, duties and responsibilities as exist for natural born children. Those rights and duties include, but are not limited to, the right of the child to inherit through you and your family, the legal obligation to financially support the child, the right of the child to seek support from you, the principle that these rights and duties would continue if you and your spouse separate or divorce as well as if the child develops any physical, psychological problems or becomes ill or disabled for any reason in the future.

At the final adoption hearing, your attorney and/or the Judge will confirm whether you understand the legal consequence of finalizing the adoption matter. You will also need to submit any additional documentation required by law that has not already been filed with the court. For example, certification of service for any interested parties, original birth certificate, background checks for prospective parents, home study report or Act 101 notices. The hearing is intended to be a happy occasion. Other family members and friends can attend along with the prospective adoptee and parents. The Judge presiding over the case will often allow for pictures at the conclusion of the proceedings.