Posted on October 26, 2015
There are two ways to adopt infants domestically in the United States, either through an adoption agency or via independent adoption, which relies upon the services of an attorney.
If you wish to work with an agency, you will sign on as a client and undergo an adoption home study, as well as prepare a profile about yourself and your family, to be shown to potential birth mothers. The agency will help you develop a relationship with any potential birthmother or set of birthparents that choose you. They will provide emotional support to both you and the expectant parent(s) until the adoption is complete. The agency may serve as an ongoing liaison for information, including pictures and letters, if sent between you and the birthmother after the child joins your family, if all parties are in agreement.
If you decide upon independent adoption, you will need to retain the services of an attorney with expertise in adoption law, who is licensed in your state of residence. The attorney will advise you of the legal steps required for you to take custody of any child you wish to adopt. Once you are deemed legally qualified, you can reach out to potential birthmothers via online websites or through print advertising, provided this type of outreach is legal in your state. After contact is made, the adoption attorney will initiate due diligence procedures, to ensure there are no legal, medical or emotional issues of concern and guide you through every step of the adoption process. If necessary, he or she can also work with other professionals, such as an adoption attorney in the birthmother’s state of residence and also refer you to other professionals you may require, such as therapists or physicians.