Volume XXIV

Adoption and Foster Care

by Edited by Leanne Aban, Amanda Maze-Schultz, Ambreanna Arneus, Kyle Casey, Rob Hopkirk, Addyson Jackson, and Chunhui Li

The state-regulated system of adoption and foster care raises important questions about the proper role of government intervention in the typically private family realm. Issues of gender, sexual orientation, and race influence the way the law recognizes American families, particularly the respective rights of parents and children through adoption and foster care.

This Article provides an overview of the current law governing adoption and foster care, with a particular emphasis on how gender, sexual orientation, and race impact this system. Part II introduces the doctrinal underpinnings of contemporary adoption and foster care laws, following the overall development of both family law areas. Part III discusses the rights of biological parents in adoption and foster care proceedings. This section also highlights the impact of gender on parental rights in adoption proceedings through a discussion of courts’ “biology plus” approach and the development of safe haven laws. The section concludes with a discussion of the rights of biological parents in the foster care system. Part IV addresses the impact of sexual orientation on adoption and foster care placement. Part V explores the systematic impact of adoption and foster care laws on children involved in the processes, including the challenges faced by gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgendered youth in the system. Part VI discusses developments in adoptions involving individuals with relative ties to the child, including kinship care and second parent adoptions. Part VII examines the role of race in adoptions and the foster care system.

Adoption and Foster Care AR23