2011 ORS § 109.309¹
Petition for adoption
  • residency requirement
  • where filed
  • venue
  • notice
  • placement report
  • fee
  • rules

(1) Any person may petition the circuit court for leave to adopt another person and, if desired, for a change of the other persons name. One petitioner, the child, one parent or the person, who is not an adoption agency, consenting to the adoption as required under ORS 109.312 (Consent to adoption) (1) must be a resident of this state. As used in this subsection, resident means a person who has resided in this state continuously for a period of six months prior to the date of the petition.

(2) Except as provided in subsection (3) of this section, when the petition is for the adoption of a minor child, the adoption is governed by the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act, ORS 109.701 (Short title) to 109.834 (Severability clause).

(3)(a) Notwithstanding ORS 109.741 (Initial child custody jurisdiction) and 109.744 (Exclusive, continuing jurisdiction), a court of this state has jurisdiction over the adoption of a minor child if, immediately prior to the filing of a petition for adoption:

(A) The minor child resided in this state for at least six consecutive months including periods of temporary absence;

(B) One parent or another person, who is not an adoption agency, consenting to the adoption as required under ORS 109.312 (Consent to adoption) (1) resided in this state for at least six consecutive months including periods of temporary absence;

(C) The prospective adoptive parent resided in this state for at least six consecutive months including periods of temporary absence and substantial evidence is available in this state concerning the present or future care of the minor child;

(D) It appears that no court of another state would have jurisdiction under circumstances substantially in accordance with subparagraphs (A) to (C) of this paragraph; or

(E) A court of another state has declined to exercise jurisdiction on the grounds that this state is a more appropriate forum to hear a petition for adoption of the minor child and it is in the best interests of the minor child that a court of this state assume jurisdiction.

(b) As used in paragraph (a) of this subsection, periods of temporary absence means periods of absence of not more than a total of 30 days in the prior six consecutive months.

(4) The petition to adopt a person 18 years of age or older may be filed in the county where the petitioner, the person to be adopted or the person who consents to the adoption resides.

(5) In a petition to adopt a minor child, venue lies in the Oregon county with which the child has the most significant connection or in the Oregon county in which the licensed adoption agency is located.

(6)(a) When the petition is for the adoption of a minor child, the petitioner shall also file at the time of filing the petition:

(A) A written statement containing the full names and permanent addresses of:

(i) The child;

(ii) The petitioner;

(iii) All persons whose consent to the adoption is required under ORS 109.312 (Consent to adoption) when such names are either known or may be readily ascertained by the petitioner;

(iv) The persons with whom the child has lived during the last five years and the places where the child has lived during that period, if the names and addresses may be readily ascertained by the petitioner;

(v) If known to the petitioner, any person not a party to the proceeding who has physical custody of the child or claims rights of legal custody or physical custody of, or parenting time or visitation with, the child; and

(vi) The Oregon licensed adoption agency, if any, or the relative or person that privately placed the child for adoption.

(B) The documents demonstrating consent under ORS 109.312 (Consent to adoption) to the adoption of the minor child.

(C) Written evidence documenting a current home study that has been approved by either the Department of Human Services or an Oregon licensed adoption agency submitted for the purpose of demonstrating that the petitioner meets the minimum standards for adoptive homes as set forth in the departments administrative rules.

(b) A relative who qualifies under the department administrative rules for a waiver of the departments home study requirements described in paragraph (a)(C) of this subsection may file the request for waiver along with the petition for adoption.

(c) The department, upon request by the petitioner, may waive the home study requirements described in paragraph (a)(C) of this subsection in an adoption in which one of the childs biological or adoptive parents retains parental rights. The department shall waive post-placement reports in an adoption in which one of the childs biological or adoptive parents retains parental rights.

(7)(a) The petitioner shall cause copies of the documents required to be filed with the court under subsection (6) of this section to be served upon the Director of Human Services, by either registered or certified mail with return receipt or personal service, within 30 days after the documents have been filed with the court.

(b) In the case of an adoption described in subsection (6)(c) of this section, the petitioner shall also serve the petition, by either registered or certified mail with return receipt or personal service:

(A) On all persons whose consent to the adoption is required under ORS 109.312 (Consent to adoption) unless the persons written consent is filed with the court; and

(B) On the parents of the party whose parental rights would be terminated, if the names and addresses are known or may be readily ascertained by the petitioner. Service required by this subparagraph may be waived by the court for good cause.

(c) When a parent of the child is deceased or incapacitated, the petitioner shall also serve the petition on the parents of the deceased or incapacitated parent, if the names and addresses are known or may be readily ascertained by the petitioner. Service required by this paragraph may be waived by the court for good cause. As used in this paragraph:

(A) Incapacitated means a condition in which a persons ability to receive and evaluate information effectively or to communicate decisions is impaired to such an extent that the person lacks the capacity to meet the essential requirements for the persons physical health or safety.

(B) Meet the essential requirements for the persons physical health or safety means those actions necessary to provide the health care, food, shelter, clothing, personal hygiene and other care without which serious physical injury or illness is likely to occur.

(d) The court may not rule upon the petition until at least 90 days after the date that the documents were served upon the director. However, the department may waive the 90-day period.

(8)(a) Within 90 days after the service on the director, the department shall investigate and file for the consideration of the judge before whom the petition for adoption is pending a placement report containing information regarding the status of the child and evidence concerning the suitability of the proposed adoption. The department may designate an Oregon licensed adoption agency to investigate and report to the court. If the department designates an Oregon licensed adoption agency to investigate and report to the court, the department shall make the designation and provide all necessary information and materials to the Oregon licensed adoption agency no later than 30 days after the service on the director. However, the department may waive the placement report requirement.

(b) Upon receipt of a written request by the petitioners attorney, the department shall furnish to that attorney copies of any information that the department has filed with the court.

(c) The department may charge the petitioner a fee for investigating a proposed nonagency adoption and preparing the home study report described in subsection (6)(a)(C) of this section and the placement report described in paragraph (a) of this subsection. The petitioner shall report the fee amount to the court. The court granting the adoption shall make a finding as to whether the fee is necessary and reasonable. Any fee charged may not exceed reasonable costs for investigation, home study and placement report preparation. The department shall prescribe by rule the procedure for computing the investigation, home study and placement report preparation fee. The rules shall provide a waiver of either part or all of the fee based upon the petitioners ability to pay.

(9) The amounts of any fees collected under subsection (8) of this section are continuously appropriated to the department for use in preparing the home study and placement reports required under subsections (6)(a)(C) and (8)(a) of this section.

(10)(a) Except as provided in paragraph (b) of this subsection, a court may not grant a judgment for the adoption of a minor child unless the petitioner has filed with the court the documents described in subsections (6) and (8)(a) of this section.

(b) A person is not required to file a home study or a placement report with the court when the department has granted the person a waiver under department rules.

(11) The adoption shall comply with the Indian Child Welfare Act (25 U.S.C. 1901 et seq.), if applicable. Every adoption petition involving the Indian Child Welfare Act shall include the following:

(a) A statement of the efforts to notify the appropriate Indian tribe or tribes of the adoption; and

(b) A statement of the efforts to comply with the placement preferences of the Indian Child Welfare Act (25 U.S.C. 1901 et seq.) or the placement preferences of the appropriate Indian tribe. [1993 c.717 §2 (enacted in lieu of 109.310); 1993 c.717 §9; 1995 c.90 §3; 1995 c.730 §2; 1997 c.470 §1; 1999 c.160 §2; 1999 c.649 §52; 2003 c.258 §1; 2003 c.576 §144; 2005 c.475 §1]