To say that every family is unique is to state one of the more obvious and well understood facts of the universe. Every family's circumstances and makeup is like a fingerprint specific to that family and no one else's. Some families have landed in countries very different from where their ancestors first began, while other families are founders of their own communities and never took the opportunity to leave. Some families have children who were born of their parents, while some families have children adopted from others. In the same way there are many reasons why each family is unique, there are also many reasons why some children are adopted. Adoption is a great way to share the love of your family, and there are several types of adoptions and several circumstances to be considered first. Here is a quick summary of the different types of adoptions which may be available to you:
Adopting a Child from Foster Care
When birthparents are legally deemed unable to appropriately care for their child, that child must be taken away from them. In these cases, their parental rights are terminated and the child is sent into foster care where they await another family to adopt them as their own. If your family is looking to adopt a foster child, contact any public or private foster agencies responsible for the placement of foster children. The laws for these adoptions vary from state to state, so be sure to understand your state's laws before getting too involved in the process.
In these situations, families act as an intermediary between the child's birthparents and their adopted parents, but with the expectation that the child will one day be available to be adopted by the fost-adopt family. This can be a great option for those looking to adopt quickly, but comes with a significant emotional risk.
Just as the name sounds, infant adoptions cover any adoption of a very young child. For many reasons, these adoptions are very popular; so popular, in fact, that there are often more families than there are infants to be adopted. Though these adoptions are legal in most states, they are not allowed in all states, so it's important to do some research before starting the process of an infant adoption.
These adoptions most often apply to families with very specific circumstances. There are some cases where a marriage is dissolved and one spouse is found to be an unfit parent to their child. In these cases, when the other spouse remarries, their child can be adopted by the new spouse. State laws vary here, as well, so research is important. For instance, some state's require a home inspection before a stepchild can be adopted. And in some states, the child must consent to adoption first. Again, it's best to check your state's laws first.
The reasons for adoption are broad and unique, but there's one piece of advice that's universal to any potential adopting families: find an attorney. The very act of adoption is significant, one which forever alters the life of the child and the family. It only makes sense, then, for there to be loads of paperwork and security measures. Working closely with an attorney who specializes in Family Law and Adoptions will not only increase your chances of adopting a child, it'll also remove much of the stress of going through the process. Furthermore, an attorney who specializes in adoption is already well acquainted with your state's laws and can guide you in the best direction. Before you begin searching foster homes for the right child, start looking for the right attorney. You'll be glad you did.