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Deciding to Adopt: Some Frequently Asked Initial Questions

Deciding to expand your family and adopt a child is a huge event.  You want to make sure you are ready (both emotionally and financially).  Often, families come to my office with a slew of questions about the process.  Here are a few that may help ease some initial concerns and help you make the final decision to move ahead:

Q: How do I find the right adoption professionals?

A: When adopting you will need a variety of professionals to help along with way.  You want to choose an agency and a lawyer whom you can trust.  Someone or some organization that you believe will be clear, up front and capable.  Think about community reputation, size, recent success stories.  

Q: What is the difference between adopting from a private adoption agency or through the public welfare system and an agency in that realm?

A: When adopting through a private agency, you are working with a birth family who has actively chosen to place their child for adoption, not a family who's child/family is being monitored by a public welfare agency.  A private agency may provide a bit more of a service and comfort level for families as they have an equal duty to both birth and adopting families.  Often a public agency spends the first portion of its time with the foster family still attempting to reunify the child with his or her birth mother.  There could be a chance in both cases that the adoption does not proceed- in a private adoption, the birth mother could change her mind; in a public adoption the child could be reunified with his or her parent.  Cost can also be a factor as private agencies often cost more than adopting through the foster care system

Q: How much is adopting going to cost?

A: This varies from state to state.  You are looking at an agency fee, legal fees, court filing fees and possible home evaluation fees.  Consult your attorney or agency for state regulations and fees.

Q: Can I get financial assistance to help finanace my adoption?

A: There is a a federal adoption tax credit and some states also have something similar.  You may also be able to get a low interest loan, help from your employer or a grant.

If you are looking to adopt a child into your home and still have more questions, please feel free to contact us at Schimmel Family Law to schedule your consultation today!

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