My question involves adoption law for the State of: VA
I have a question regarding the adoption of a step child being contested, I actually just created an account so I can ask this question and hopefully get help with it.
It's kind of an involved explanation, but I'll try to be clear and brief. Some of this is officially recorded through the courts, and some of it is unofficial, but I'll be mentioning to indicate just how bad the situation is
My Fiance and I have a 3 year old son, I have been in his life since he was a year old, and for all intents and purposes my fiance and I both consider me to be the child's mother, and while even at three he knows I'm not his biological mother, he calls me [Nickname]Mommy (like, if my nickname was Sam I'd be SamMommy or SamMom) and he calls his biological CrazyNika.
Though I am not an attorney, my parents (who are very supportive of their soon-to-be son in law and soon-to-be step grandson) and I have helped my fiance win full physical and legal custody. the biological mother has been declared mentally unfit to care for her son, and has been deemed to be an emotionally abusive presence in his life, and has no visitation, although she may occasionally call on my Fiance's phone and request to speak with him, but A: it has to be a phone call, no video chatting, and B: Our son has the right to refuse to talk to her. Ever since loosing her custody in totality, she has utilized this maybe twice, when it first happened months ago, and hasn't called since.
We were able to get this far because:
-Our son is a rape child. The biological mother drugged and raped my fiance in order to conceive this child. While this has never been proven in court, it was used as annecdotal evidence
-The biological mom smoked and partook in illicit substances during her pregnancy (meth, specifically). He was born without any ill effects from these actions, and again, her use during pregnancy was never proved but it HAS been proven that she has participated in their use since then, and is currently dealing weed and meth (under investigation)
-Our son, not me or my fiance, but our son through his guardian ad litem has a restraining order again is biological grandmother (his biological mother's mother) because of multiple assault charges against several people including but not limited to Myself, my Fiance, my fiance's mother, and my fiance's sister.
-Our son's biological mother befriended members of a biker gang (officially proven) and contracted them to kill my fiance, and almost succeeded. (He has a permanent cracked accros the back of his skull from a liberally applied metal pipe) this is being investigated
-Our son's biological member has tried to pull up multiple false assault charges against my fiance (proven to be false in court, she now has false report charges on her record)
-The biological mother has another child, a daughter, who was also removed from her for both legal and physical custody, although she does get one day of visitation a month. This child is physically stunted due to neglect in her first two years of life, which is legally documented.
-Even speaking to our son about his mother, or about her within his earshot, causes his to regress in development. The last time my fiance's mother talked to our son about bio mom, he stopped wearing pull ups, had to go back in diapers, started drinking exclusively from a bottle again, and lost about half his vocabulary. This lasted about two weeks before he finally started acting like the intelligent 3 year old he is
Now, my fiance and I are getting married in less than a month, and we both want to move forward with myself adopting our son. This is primarily because my fiance works in an extremely hazardous environment, and it isn't overstating it to say literally any shift he works could be his last. If he ends up passing away on the job, if I do not have parental rights, our son will go to his maternal Aunt (this has been officially documented) and, unofficially she has confirmed that she will simply give him back to his Biological mother because she has no interest in raising him.
And the final blow, the biological mother, in an accidental run-in at the grocery store, told me in no uncertain terms that if I tried to "take her parental rights" she would contest me in court
Short of getting an attorney (which we will absolutely be doing, but it might make when we're able to start the process much much later than either of us would like), is there anything we can do to expedite this process? It is crippling to our son's development, and honestly impacting the quality of life for my fiance and I as well. For the past two years there's never been a stretch of time where weren't in court any less often than two or three times a month. For our sanity, and for our son's well-being, we need this to end
Any suggestions would be very helpful, thank you for your time