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Melissa A. Featherston

Missouri adoption and custody of immigrant boy questioned

A growing problem is slowly coming into the national spotlight. The problem is between parents who have adopted children legally in the United States, including a boy in Missouri, and their biological parents, who have been stripped of parental rights for being in the country illegally. Some of the biological parents have had their children taken from them while they were detained on immigration violations.

Their children were then put up for adoption, and American families have adopted them. This is causing child custody issues, and one of the cases has happened right here in Missouri. In the Missouri case, a mother was arrested served prison time and then was deported when her son was seven months old. He was then put up for adoption and has not seen his biological mother since. The family that has now raised him for five years is facing a battle of their own to keep the boy they adopted and love. It should be pointed out the adopted father also had a similar criminal record as a minor.

The unfortunately, both families are at a disadvantage in this situation. Both will likely fight for custody of the boy. How the courts decide to grant custody in many of these cases remains to be seen, but it could have to do with both parental rights along with the best interest of the child.

Although cases of this nature may be extreme, it is important to point out how sensitive and contentious the issue of child custody is. These cases should be handled by an attorney that understands those sensitivities while fighting for the rights of the parents involved.

Source: ABC News, "Adoption Battle Over 5-Year Old Boy Pits Missouri Couple Vs. Illegal Immigrant," Lauren Gilger, Brian Ross, Feb. 1, 2012

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