When a child is adopted , he/she becomes the legitimate child of the personss who have adopted him/her , as though he/she had been born of them during the existence of a lawful marriage . The child takes their surname or retains his/her previous surname and the adoptive parents become the child’s legal guardians.
The adoptive parent have the same rights and obligations as normal biological parents. The adoption also terminates the rights and obligations , existing between the child that is being adopted , and his/her natural parents and their relatives .
An adopted child is able to inherit in terms of the adoptive parents will and should the adopted parents get divorced the same rules will apply regarding custody of the adopted child, as it would with a biological child.
Children may be adopted at any age and the child does not necessarily have to be orphaned. The adoption of children is done through the Department of Child Welfare and there are certain legal requirements that have to be met. The Commissioner of the children’s court will then finalise the adoption once all the requirements have been met to the satisfaction of the Court.