Why Does Adoption Cost so Much ?

Chosen Parent’s takes calls every day from loving  families that are desperate to add to their family , but once they find out the cost of private adoptions, they understandable get very discouraged.

We explain to them that there are two avenues in which to adopt. They can adopt through their state or county Department of Adoptions. ( In order to find one close to you it is advised that you contact your Department of Social or Human Services and ask for the number for the adoption department ). There is no charge generally to adopt through the county. The problem , however , is that there are very few infants available, and a very lengthy list of people waiting for those. Most infants that are available through the county have been removed from their biological parents by Child Protective Services due to abuse or neglect , including use of illegal drugs. Once removed, the birth mother has very little say in who fosters or adopts her child. Most counties have now implemented what is referred to as “Fost- Adopt”. This means that the families that apply are in agreement to foster the child while the parental rights of the biological mother and father  are terminated. This is good for the child, as he/she is not uprooted from a foster home and put into an adopting home at a later date. Since it can often take over a year to terminate the parental rights, the move can be very traumatic for the child. One of the  problems  that the Fost-Adopt parents face , is that the parental rights may never be terminated, and the child may be returned to their biological parents down the road, or a family member. So, although adopting a child through the county will cost less money , it can end up costing a lot of time .

Chosen Parents Adoptions Inc. is a for profit corporation that assists adoption professionals in the private sector. The majority of infants are placed for adoption privately . There are many reasons for this. The expecting mother is able to choose and meet the family that adopts her child, she is also usually able to be supported financially during the pregnancy , and she is able to create her own adoption plan the way that she wants. The advantages to the adoptive parents are that they are able to have a relationship with the expectant mother, as well as make plans to be at the birth of their child. They may have access to her medical  records, and usually in a very short time after the birth , consents and relinquishments are signed so the adoptive parents do not have to worry about losing the child that they are adopting. Furthermore, the adoptive parents have some control as far as being proactive in searching for a child to adopt, rather than sitting on a government list for years, they are usually made aware through their professional of incoming cases and can choose which ones that they want to be presented for. The costs to adopt are categorized into several categories.

  • Firstly , the adoptive parents need to pay for a home study to be done by a licensed social worker in their state. The fee for this runs between $1500 and $2500.
  • Depending on what state that the birth mother comes from , their is a possibility that two attorneys or licensed agencies need to be hired. One in the state where the mother resides, and possibly one in the state where the parents reside . ( This will depend on whether the state that the baby is born in will allow an out of state family to finalize there ) . These attorneys (or agencies since some states only allow agencies and not attorneys to handle adoptions)  can charge $5-$10000 each. ( Usually one is much higher than the other depending on who is doing most of the work )  They will have the duties of making sure that  the rights of the birth parents are terminated  , contacting the hospital,  obtaining medical records if available filing the paperwork that allows you to leave one state and bring the baby home to yours (ICPC) , dispensing living expenses and of course filing all paperwork and finalizing the adoption.
  • Then there are usually birth mother living expenses . This can include rent , food, utilities  , maternity clothes , etc. Some mothers are matched with adoptive families very late in their pregnancy , and their expenses may be low. Others may have 5 or 6 months of expenses. Traditionally , the courts allow for up to 2 months of living expenses after the birth. Not all states allow living expenses. If you are on a tight budget you may want to opt for a mother that resides in a state that does not allow any expenses, although oftentimes they relocate to a state where they can get support , so don’t count on it. Birth mother living expenses average around $6-$10,000.
  • You need to factor in travel and hotel if your baby is going to be born out of state. Count on around 2 weeks in the other state after the birth. it can take that long to get the paperwork approved for you to leave. Sometimes it takes much shorter, but every once in a while there is a snag, so be prepared. Some adoptive parents go early and rent an Airbnb .. this can be less costly than a hotel.
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