In Virginia, there are two different courts which are involved in the adoption process. The Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court is the court which oversees the part of the process during which a birth parent signs the consent to adoption. Unless an exception applies, the birth parent must appear in court and sign the consent in front of a judge. After that judge witnesses the signing of the consent he or she will issue an order awarding legal custody of the child to the adoptive parent or parents. The Circuit Court is the court which signs the final order granting the adoption. No hearing in the Circuit Court is usually required.
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