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Washington Adoption Laws

Making the decision to adopt a child significantly changes the lives of everyone involved. State law governs the adoption process ranging from the most basic of laws (including who can adopt and who is eligible to be adopted) to more complex areas of adoption law, such as when consent is needed in an adoption.

This article provides a brief overview of Washington adoption laws.

Overview of Washington Adoption Laws

While the relevant statutes that govern adoption are best interpreted with help from an attorney, it always helps to become acquainted with the law by reading a plain English summary. Read the chart below for a basic overview of Washington's adoption laws.


§ 26.133.140-150 of the Washington Revised Code

Who May Be Adopted

Any person, regardless of age or residence, may be adopted

Who May Adopt

Any person 18 years or older who is legally competent and has an approved family assessment

Age that Child's Consent Needed

14 years or older

Home Residency Required Prior to Finalization of Adoption?

Not required

State Agency/Court

Social & Health Services/Superior

Statute of Limitations to Challenge

1 year, only allowed by appellate rules

Note: State laws are always subject to change through the passage of new legislation, rulings in the higher courts (including federal decisions), ballot initiatives, and other means. While we strive to provide the most current information available, please consult an attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.

Washington Adoption Laws: Related Resources

Need Help with Washington Adoption Laws? Contact an Attorney

The adoption process in Washington can be lengthy and confusing. It's a good idea to get legal representation to help with preparing the required documents, filing the petition to adopt, and getting a court date to finalize the adoption.

Consider contacting a Washington adoption attorney today to get started.

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