How to adopt a child? This is one of those questions that go unanswered online. You will find several articles telling you about the steps on how to adopt a child. However, only a few people will talk about the laws related to Child Adoption and adoption certificate.
The adoption process becomes even more complex when the whole process involves single-parent adoption. With only single parents taking care of the adopted children, there are other variables to take into consideration.
Laws On How To Adopt A Child?
When it comes down to child adoption, the government has to look into the adoptive parents. In addition to that, there are several other requirements for adopting a child that needs to be taken care of.
Federal legislation set the frame on how to adopt a child. The states pass laws to comply with the adoption requirements and become eligible for federation funding. Thus, you can say the states regulate the Child adoption laws, and these laws keep on changing depending on the states.
Federal Law On How To Adopt A Child
Federal laws provide the basic framework on which the child adoption law needs to be structured. The federal legislation asks the state laws to enact the adoption law in these frameworks. There have been cases where the adoptive parent looks for cross-border child adoption.
State Law On How To Adopt A Child
Child adoption is a legal process everywhere. This process helps families that lack offspring. States hold the most power when it comes down to child adoption. However, the state child adoption law keeps on changing within every state.
Who Can Adopt?
Child adoption is a legal process in America. To adopt a child from a different country, you need to be eligible first. There are certain conditions that you have to meet under US federal laws and state laws.
Requirement Under US Federal Law
The federal association that determines an individual’s eligibility criteria to adopt is US Citizenship and Immigration Services. Without the USCIS permission, you won’t be able to bring your adopted child to America. Before you can do so, you need to prove to USCIS that you are capable enough to take care of the child.
You must meet the following requirements:
- You must be a U.S. citizen.
- You need to be married and should jointly accept the adoption.
- If you are unmarried, you at least need to be 25 years old.
- You need to be financially secure to give the right living standard to your adopted child.
Requirement Under US State law
If you have qualified under the federal adoption law, you need to go through state adoption law. The state will see whether you qualify for the Child Welfare Information Gateway or not. Although every state has its requirements, complete the whole process before adopting a child.
How To Adopt A Child?
Adopting a child can be a complex process; however, if you can approach the process with a step-by-step plan, the whole process will smoothen up a bit. We have broken the whole process into several processes for your down below.
Step 1: Do Your Research
It is important that you join groups and communities to get relevant information from other adoptive parents. While you are creating your network in the community, these are questions that will be asked off the bat.
- Whether you want to adopt a newborn baby or an older child?
- Do you want to adopt domestically or internationally?
- Are you willing to adopt a child from a different race?
Step 2: Decide Who You Want To Work With
Before you go with how to adopt a child, it is important that you decide whom you want to work with. But the agencies and attorneys help the adoptive parent to fulfill the legal requirements.
Pregnant women who are interested in placing their child for adoption get in contact with other agencies. At the same time, attorneys and their clients place their advertisements. When it comes to international adoption, agencies handle all the paperwork and legal procedures.
Step 3: Select An Adoption Attorney
When you’re looking for attorneys, you need to find experienced attorneys who have handled hundreds of adoption cases. Whereas, while you are taking help from an agency, ensure that they have the store license.
Although adoption scammers are not the norm, it is always better to take precautions before making a deal with the birth mother.
Step 4: Complete The Application
When you contact a good agency, you get an invitation to attend one of their sponsored orientation sessions. You might find that there are other adoptive parents as well who are attending the session. The session is mostly about hoping the agency does well and helps the parents adopt the child legally.
The agency will review your application and decide whether to accept you as a client or not. Once the application is accepted, next comes Home Study or Family Assessment. This ensures that you are capable enough to take care of the child.
Step 5: Be Patient
Adopting a child is always followed by a long waiting period. There are several factors that determine the time period of the adoption. The following might be the key factors affecting the time period.
- Parent’s age.
- Family Structure.
- State Legal Requirements.
- International adoption procedure.
If you are looking for an internationally adopted child, then the adoption period can last up to two years. In domestic adoption, it all depends on the pregnancy phase of the birth mother.
Step 6: Complete The Legal Procedure
After the child is placed with you, you need to complete all the legal procedures to ensure no further issues related to child adoption. Usually, the child lives with the adoptive parent for a period of six months before the finalization of the adoption process.
During this time, the agency provides all the supportive services to the birth mother and adoptive parents. However, with international adoption, the procedure will depend on what end of the visa the child has.
Prepare Your Home
Once it is confirmed that a baby or a toddler will join your family, the last thing remaining is to prepare your house to welcome the adopted child. You might as well prepare your home with different things.