Eight Key Differences Between Custody and Adoption

  1. Custody does not terminate the parental rights of the parents. In adoption cases the parents rights have been legally terminated.
  2. Custody is never permanent. If the circumstances change, the custody arrangement can be changed.  Adoption is a final.
  3. Custody allows the opposing parent to have contact with child through joint custody or visitation. In adoption cases, the parents have no legal right to access to the child.
  4. Custody requires non custodial parent to pay child support. Adoption ends parents obligation to pay child support.
  5. Custody does not impact inheritance rights. Adoption does end a parent right to inherit from the child.
  6. Custody files are part of the public courthouse record.  Adoption files are generally sealed.
  7.  Custody cases are generally contested.  Final adoption hearing are not normally contested.
  8. Custody does not require any changes to minor child’s birth certificate. Adoption cases involve the issuance of new birth certificates.


Photo Credit:  Visual Hunt

Posted in Child Custody, General Information.

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