In Kentucky, any adult age 18 or older who has lived in Kentucky for at least one year can adopt children in Kentucky, except in the case of foster adoptions. Kentucky adoptions work as follows:

Adopting a Stepchild

If the courts determine that your stepchild's biological parent who isn’t your spouse has effectively abandoned the child, you may be able to adopt the child without that parent’s permission. Otherwise, you’ll need the biological parent’s consent.

Family adoption

Extended family members such as grandparents and siblings may be able to adopt their family members in Kentucky. For this adoption to occur, a judge would have to deem the biological parents negligent. Foster parenting or guardianship may be better options – Michele can help you decide.

Same-sex couple adoption

Same-sex couples can jointly adopt children in Kentucky, with one exception: Same-sex couples may not adopt stepchildren. Single LGBTQ+ people don’t have different limits for adoption than other Kentucky adults.

Foster parent

To be a foster parent, you must be 21 years of age or older. You can also adopt foster children without first becoming a foster parent, as long as you seek to adopt only foster children who are up for adoption.

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