2009 New Mexico Statutes
Chapter 40 - Domestic Affairs.
Article 14 - Adult Adoptions
Section 40-14-12 - Adjudication; disposition; decree of adoption.
40-14-12. Adjudication; disposition; decree of adoption.
A. The court shall conduct a hearing on the petition for adoption. The petitioner and the adoptee shall attend the hearing, unless the court waives a party's appearance for good cause shown by the party. As used in this subsection, "good cause" includes burdensome travel requirements.
B. The petitioner shall present and prove each allegation set forth in the petition for adoption by clear and convincing evidence.
C. The court shall grant a decree of adoption if it finds that the petitioner has proved by clear and convincing evidence that:
(1) the court has jurisdiction to enter a decree of adoption affecting the adoptee;
(2) the adoptee has consented to the adoption;
(3) service of the petition for adoption has been made or dispensed with as to all persons entitled to notice;
(4) at least thirty days have passed since the filing of the petition for adoption;
(5) the petitioner is a suitable adoptive parent and the best interests of the petitioner, adoptee and the public are served by the adoption; and
(6) if the adoptee is foreign born, the adoptee is legally free for adoption.
D. In addition to the findings set forth in Subsection C of this section, the court, in any decree of adoption, shall make findings with respect to each allegation of the petition.
E. If the court determines that any of the findings for a decree of adoption have not been met or that the adoption is not in the best interests of the petitioner, adoptee or the public, the court shall deny the petition.
F. The decree of adoption shall include the new name of the adoptee and shall not include any other name by which the adoptee has been known or the names of the former parents. The decree of adoption shall order that from the date of the decree, the adoptee shall be the child of the petitioner and accorded the status set forth in Section 13 of the Adult Adoption Act [40-14-13 NMSA 1978].
G. A decree of adoption shall be entered within six months of the filing of the petition.
H. A decree of adoption may not be attacked upon the expiration of one year from the date of the entry of the decree.
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