Soulsby Law serves clients in San Antonio, Bexar County and throughout the state.

Same-sex couples and adoption: An overview of Texas laws

On Behalf of | Oct 1, 2019 | LGBTQ Family Law

Here in the U.S., more than 700,000 same-sex couples are living together. Of those, research from the UCLA School of Law estimates about 114,000 are raising children. While the majority have biological offspring, just over one-fifth are bringing up adopted children.

There are no federal laws specifically protecting or prohibiting LGBTQ couples when it comes to adoption. Instead, it is up to each state to enact its own policies. Here’s a brief overview of where Texas stands.

Same-sex couples can adopt children in Texas

Texas law is fairly straightforward in that it simply does not address same-sex couples with respect to adoption. There is no specific prohibition on an LGBTQ couple – or individual – petitioning to adopt a child. Nor, on the other hand, are there any specific protections ensuring they maintain that right.

There is one relatively new law, however, that is worth paying attention to.

In 2017, the state’s governor signed into law a bill allowing child welfare providers that contract with the state to deny adoptions to hopeful couples if it goes against the organization’s “sincerely held religious beliefs.” While the law does not specifically mention same-sex couples, opponents of the measure argue it is a way for organizations to discriminate against the LGBTQ community.

Pursuing adoption

One rule should not be a deterrent to a couple thinking about adoption. There are many opportunities for same-sex partners to grow their family this way.

As with all adoptions however, you may want to consider an attorney to help guide you through the process. Not only can they ensure your rights are protected and the process goes smoothly, they can also be there to answer any questions and quell any worries about potential hang-ups.

There are thousands of couples benefiting from the joys of a new child. If you’re hoping to be one of them, don’t let anything stop you.