Montana has adoption laws in place that cover who is eligible to adopt and who is eligible for adoption. The rights and responsibilities of all parties during the adoption proceedings are also covered by Montana adoption laws, according to the Montana Judicial Branch.
Only certain individuals are eligible to adopt children, advises the Montana Judicial Branch. The list includes a husband and wife together or either the wife or husband if one spouse is the child's parent. Additionally, an unmarried person who is at least 18 years old may adopt. A married person who is legally separated or whose spouse has been declared legally incompetent may individually adopt a child.
Minor children are eligible for adoption in Montana if they do not have living parents, the parents' legal rights have been terminated, or the parents, guardian or custodial agency gives legal consent. Adults are eligible for adoption and do not require the parental consent, counseling, evaluation or supervision mandated when minor children are adopted. Stepchildren are eligible for adoption if the living noncustodial parent relinquishes parental rights in writing, notes the Montana Judicial Branch.
Unmarried birth mothers have the right to make timely decisions regarding adoption, and they are entitled to assurance relative to the adoption's permanency, explains the Montana Judicial Branch. Unmarried birth fathers are responsible for protecting their rights by demonstrating commitment to the responsibility of parenthood through consistent and timely financial support, demonstrating a substantial relationship with the child and complying with the requirements of Montana's putative father registry.