When there is an agreement between a stepparent or relative and the child’s biological parent or parents that an adoption of the child or children should occur, a Petition for Agreed Stepparent Adoption can be filed. This is far easier, less expensive and quicker than the traditional route of a filing to terminate the parental rights of the biological parents and then filing for an adoption. Tennessee law allows for an expedited process in such an agreed adoption, and the process is less expensive than some people realize.
As long as everyone signs the adoption paperwork, the adoption can happen without having to wait six months and sometimes in less than thirty days. If the child is fourteen years of age or older, then the child must consent to the adoption in the petition.