Agency adoption refers to the process of adoption, where the adoptive parents seek the assistance of a licensed adoption agency to locate a child for adoption. Agency adoptions may occur through the local public agencies such as social service organizations, child welfare or foster care or through private licensed adoption agencies. In case of agency adoptions, there is usually a fee charged to the adoptive parents.
The Children in Agency Adoption
An adoption agency may receive children, who are formally relinquished to the agency for adoption by biological parents due to various reasons. The adoption agency (usually the public agencies) also receives children through court orders where the parental rights of the biological parents have been terminated by a court ruling.
Benefits of Agency Adoption
Adoption agencies are required to strictly adhere to licensing and procedural standards. Hence they provide the greatest assurance of monitoring and overview of the entire process. Hence, though agency adoptions take longer (than independent adoptions), several adoptive parents prefer this method of adoption.
The Legal Formalities in Agency Adoption
The legal process begins with filing of the adoption petition with the court. This petition is required to be accompanied by a range of documents including the Pre Placement Assessment, affidavit of parentage, non-identifying background information (provided by the agency) etc. Any special information particular to the child such as a court order regarding the child’s custody or visitation should be made available by the agency and should be part of the petition. Thus the agency adoption process involves considerable legal paperwork.
By law, the court is required to set a hearing for the adoption petition within three months of filing. However if the petition is unopposed for a period of six months, there is no need for a hearing and your petition will be granted.
We at McIlveen Family Law Firm have helped numerous clients expend their families and enrich their lives though agency adoption. We can take care of the legal formalities associated with the adoption, so that you remain stress-free throughout the process.