Can an Adoption in Colorado be Revoked?

Adoptions in Colorado can be revoked in limited circumstances. Although adoption can be a great way for people to expand their families and take care of children in need, adoption does not always work out.

These are often emotional situations and decisions that are not made lightly. It is important to understand your legal rights and responsibilities if you are interested in revoking a Colorado adoption. Otherwise, you may find your adoption revocation request denied.

Common Reasons for Adoption Annulment

For an adoption to be annulled or revoked, the court system will need to believe it is in the child’s best interests for the adoption to be overturned. Some of the most common reasons a Colorado family court judge might approve an adoption revocation include:

  • The adoptive parents are no longer able to provide the child with adequate care or support
  • The adoptive parents can no longer meet the child’s needs, particularly if they have become difficult to manage
  • The child is filing for emancipation, which allows them to become a legal adult before the age of 18
  • The child’s biological parents are seeking to regain their parental rights
  • The child’s parents are demanding their parental rights be reinstated if the adoption was approved due to misrepresentation, fraud, or coercion

Final Adoption Decrees Can Be Contested In Colorado

A formal adoption revocation request is not common in Colorado. However, under C.R.S. Section 14-10-124, your final adoption decree can be contested as long as it is done within 91 days of the adoption finalization. However, unless the judge finds that there is clear and convincing evidence that the adoption is no longer in the best interest of the child, as described under C.R.S. Section 19-5-21, the final decree of adoption may stand.

International Adoption Annulments

International adoptions are far more complex than domestic adoptions. Generally, the country where the adoption was finalized will have jurisdiction over the case. This means if your adoption was finalized in Ethiopia, the Ethiopian government would have jurisdiction over your adoption revocation request.

If your adoption was finalized in another country, it cannot be annulled or revoked in the United States. However, there are limited circumstances under which adoption revocation by a Colorado family court may apply. For example, if the biological parents were coerced or convinced to agree to the adoption due to fraud, the judge may grant an adoption annulment. This is also possible if the adoptive parents are neglecting or abusing the child.

Navigating an international adoption can be notoriously complicated, particularly if you are struggling with your adoptive child or have concerns that a child’s adoptive parents are not caring for them as they should. Fortunately, with the support of a legal representative, you can explore your options.

Appealing An Adoption

It is also possible to appeal an adoption if there were procedural errors or mistakes made at any point in the adoption process. Some examples of such mistakes could include:

  • Fraud
  • Coercion
  • Failure to notify natural parents that their parental rights may be terminated

It is important to keep in mind that the individual appealing the adoption will also have the burden of proof. You must be able to present evidence of procedural mistakes or errors to successfully challenge the validity of the adoption decree in your case.