There are many types of adoption where you adopt a child that you know or have some relationship with prior to the adoption. One example is a stepparent adoption where you adopt your spouse’s child. You will need permission from the absent parent who will have to give up his or her parental rights, but once the process is complete, you will have full parental rights to the child.

Adoption.org explains there are many advantages to adopting a stepchild beyond the legal rights to the child.

Right to benefits

The adoption will give your stepchild a chance to benefits. Once you adopt, the child has full inheritance rights. He or she also has the right to medical benefits and other benefits that are only available to someone who is legally related to you.

The feeling of a real family

While it may not seem like a huge deal to you, your child may also like the feeling of family that comes from everyone having the same last name. When you complete the adoption, it will allow your child to have the same last name as you and your spouse, which can be a big thing to a young child who places importance on such things.

Stability

Adopting your stepchild can bring some stability to the child’s life. In most cases, the other parent is out of the child’s life and has nothing to do with him or her. You step into that role and can be a stable parent who is always there for the child. In addition, should something happen to your spouse, a legal adoption by you means you would become the child’s legal guardian.