An Introduction To The Adoption Process

5 January 2015
 Categories: Relationships & Family, Blog


If you are looking into adopting a child, then you might be overwhelmed by the apparent complexity of the process. To help shed some light on adoption and help you understand the requirements and conditions that you must meet, here is a brief introduction to the adoption process:

The basics:

  • First you need to decide if you are adopting from a private or public group. Get to know any agencies that you seriously consider because you will want to be aware of any fees, meet other families that adopt from this agency, and attend relevant orientations.
  • Once you have selected an agency that best fits you, you will need to complete a home study. The purpose of a home study is to evaluate your home's fitness as an environment for adoption. This process can last up to two months and generally consists of a background check, several visits from social workers, and possibly education courses.
  • Once you have completed the home study process, you are placed on a waiting list. It may take longer to adopt a Caucasian baby, depending on the agency. Waiting periods for domestic adoptions can last up to five years, depending on the the desires of the birth mother and adoptive parents. When attempting to adopt foreign children, you might encounter minimum wait times of more than a year.
  • In order to complete the adoption process, the child must remain at the home of the birth parents for at least 6 months following the termination of parental rights. International adoptions may have additional requirements, depending on the country of the child's origin.

The timeline:

  • Several (3-6) months should be spent researching the topic of adoption. You will need to figure out what kind of child you wish to adopt, what kind of agency you wish to adopt from, and if you are prepared for the strain of adopting a child.
  • After you have thoroughly researched the subject, you will need to dedicate around 3 months to the home study process.
  • Once you have completed the home study, you will be on the waiting list. The amount of time you spend on the waiting list will depend on many different factors. If you want to adopt internationally, you should expect a year minimum. If you want a domestic Caucasian child, you might wait 2-5 years. However, the overall average wait time for adoptions in the United States is 14.8 months, so you probably won't end up waiting all that long.

Hopefully, you now have a slightly better idea of how the adoption process works and a general frame of reference for how long the process takes. Visit trusted agencies, such as Adopt Connect.