Intestate Inheritance Rights for Adopted Children - South Carolina

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Birth Parents in Relation to Adopted Person

Citation: Ann. Code §§ 63-9-760; 62-2-109

After a final decree of adoption is entered, the birth parents of the adopted person are relieved of all parental responsibilities and have no rights over the adopted person.

The adoption of a child by an adoptive parent does not in any way change the legal relationship between the child and either birth parent of the child whose parental responsibilities and rights are not expressly affected by the final decree.

For purposes of intestate succession by, through, or from a person, an adopted person is the child of the adopting parent and not the birth parent, except that adoption of a child by the spouse of the birth parent has no effect on the relationship between the child and that birth parent.

Adoptive Parents in Relation to Adopted Person

Citation: Ann. Code §§ 63-9-760; 62-2-109

After the final decree of adoption is entered, the relationship of parent and child and all the rights, duties, and other legal consequences of the relationship of parent and child exist between the adopted person, the adoptive parent(s), and the kindred of the adoptive parent(s).

For purposes of intestate succession by, through, or from a person, an adopted person is the child of the adopting parent(s) and not the birth parent(s).

Adopted Persons Who Are Not Included in a Will

Citation: Ann. Code §§ 62-2-302; 62-2-609

If a testator fails to provide in his or her will for any child who was adopted after the execution of the will, the omitted child receives a share in the estate equal in value to that which he or she would have received if the testator had died intestate unless:

  • It appears from the will that the omission was intentional.
  • When the will was executed, the testator gave substantially all his or her estate to his or her spouse.
  • The testator provided for the child by transfer outside the will, and the intent that the transfer be in lieu of a testamentary provision is shown by statements of the testator, from the amount of the transfer, or other evidence.

Adopted persons are included in class gift terminology and terms of relationship in accordance with rules for determining relationships for purposes of intestate succession.