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Steps to Adopt a Child

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If you are hoping to adopt a child, you’re not alone…there are thousands of adoptions each and every year. Unfortunately (or fortunately sometimes) this isn’t something you can do on a whim; it costs a considerable amount of money and takes a not inconsiderable amount of time. As you gather facts about the adoption process, you have to ask yourself if this is something you’re really ready for. Here is some information about adopting a child that can help you get started but obviously you want to check it against the laws and requirements in your local area.

The laws and regulations of adoption differ from location to location. Most states in the US, for example, require a child to live with you for six months (or another length of time) before the adoption can actually be finished. If things go well, though, this becomes mostly a formality and you should see the adoption sail through as you had hoped. You need to make yourself familiar with all of the requirements before you start the adoption process so that you aren’t unpleasantly surprised later on. You can either consult with an adoption lawyer or do your own research about adoption laws in your area, and if there’s anything you’re not clear about, you can ask the adoption agency you plan to work with. Adopting a child from a foster home is one of your options, and this has its advantages as well as its challenges. There are typically special needs kids who live in temporary homes and they might have physical, emotional or even mental disabilities. Homes like these usually house older children–very few infants–and they have age ranges from toddler-hood to late adolescence. There are often adoption subsidies available for parents who adopt such children, which helps to offset the costs of the process. Before you make the final decision to adopt a child from a foster home you need to prepare yourself for how difficult the situation can be and it can be incredibly difficult. You’ll have to have the time, patience and motivation to help a child who has most likely had a very difficult life up till this point.

The majority of adoptions do not involve adopting children from foster homes or other countries, but stepparents adopting the children of their new spouse. In these kinds of cases the biological parent of the child is usually unwilling or unable to support the child in any form and is let go from any legal obligations toward the child once the adoption has finalized. Of course, if you are the step-parent, you need to be ready to fully commit to starting this brand new family. It’s best to consult with an adoption lawyer who will be familiar with the laws and procedures regarding this process. It is possible to do this on your own but you will need to do quite a lot of research and you have to be sure that you have a thorough understanding of each of the requirements that are involved. Deciding to adopt a child is one of the most important decisions you can make so make sure you give it some real and genuine thought. You have to be emotionally as well as financially ready to make this commitment, and then you have to decide what type of child is best for your situation. While adoption is typically a long process it is also very rewarding.

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  • Posted On August 5, 2012
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