Even the happiest family dreams, like expanding your family through adoption, may have a few legal i’s to dot and t’s to cross before they can become a reality. And as every family is different, each adoption may present its own set of legal hurdles to clear. The adoption process can be emotionally and legally complex, so it’s best to understand how adoption works beforehand so you can make the right decisions for yourself or your family.
If you’ve made the decision to adopt, the next step is figuring out the logistics. First, every state requires a home study process: a series of interviews and home visits intended to evaluate the suitability or the adoptive parent or family, educate and prepare prospective parent(s), and appropriately place adoptees in the proper environment. Once you’ve been cleared to adopt, the next step is locating a child who’s available for adoption. While licensed adoption agencies may be your best source of adoption information, you can also consult with friends, relatives, or doctors, or volunteer to be a foster parent through a charity or government organization.