Steps to Adoption: Finalization
Disclaimer: The steps I describe in this series are the steps we took toward adoption. This is our perspective on the steps to adoption.
You are now ready for finalization. This is the day a judge signs off on the adoption and the child officially has your last name. Depending on state law, you may have to appear before the judge but not always especially if you adopted out of state. Your lawyer can represent you at the hearing or you could use technology to make your statements. Usually the judge asks if you are willing and able to take all responsibility for the child including but not limited to financial and emotionally.
The judge will review the order submitted by the attorney. I would suggest you ask your attorney to ask the judge to issue a new social security number. In addition, you can get a birth certificate with your last name. However, I would also ask for a copy of the original birth certificate. This may be something that your child would like in the future.
Many adoptive families have a celebration on this day. It is up to you how you celebrate but I would make it a special day. Some families also celebrate this day every year. Again, it is really up to you. While we do not celebrate every year, we remember it and talk about adoption. It is a great time of reflection.