Review of Qualification Requirements for Prospective Adoptive Parents, pg 4

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Financial Status: The ability to pay the costs and fees that will be associated with an adoption placement is a pretty important element in any adoption. Some privately funded adoption agencies are not subsidized by outside financial sources and may not be able to offer much flexibility in payment options. Others (usually those that receive outside or public funding) will have a sliding scale for fees based on total family income, or reduced flat fees, based on need. Beyond that, it is important that an adopting family will be able to manage its available family income and other resources to properly support all of its children, including the child the family hopes to adopt. The federal Adoption Expense Income Tax Credit can also be a source of useful financial assistance for those families who qualify.

Employment Stability: Since the stability of employment by the breadwinner(s) in a family can significantly impact not only the financial well-being of a family, but also its social and emotional well-being, a history of employment stability, and the prospect of future employment stability, are always considered to be big plusses in the eyes of birthparents, who in many cases may know from their own painful first-hand experience what periods of unemployment can do to the morale and stability of a family. The adopters' type of work may also be significant to birthparents, if it involves a lot of time away from home or dangerous activities.

Housing: The adopters' family home can be in the country or in the city; can be an apartment, a townhouse, a mobile home or a house; can be owned or rented, and can have a big yard, or no yard at all. The family home should, however, be safe, clean and able to adequately accommodate the child, along with existing family members. Some factors that will be addressed by the adoption caseworker in the adoption homestudy will be: the fencing of a swimming pool or other water feature, the fencing of a back yard, the status of other individuals who are living in the family home, the presence of firearms in the home, or the presence of large dogs or other potentially dangerous animals in the area.

Medical Records: A complete medical history will be required for all adopting parents, regardless of whether they are infertile or fertile. In some instances, a psychological evaluation may also be required.

Criminal Background Check: Those who seek to adopt will have their backgrounds checked thoroughly in an attempt to uncover evidence of any prior legal or criminal problems, or any problems with child abuse, financial instability, or substance abuse. It is not uncommon for this to be the first time that a prospective adoptive parent learns of a problem in his or her spouse's past that can prevent them from obtaining approval for an adoption. All adoption agencies should be very willing to discuss their specific eligibility requirements and placement options with you, and you should be forthcoming and honest about problems in your past before the background check is done.

  1. Getting Started with Adoption
  2. How Many People Choose Adoption?
  3. Is Adoption Right for You?
  4. Adoption Self-Assessment Quiz
  5. Which Children Are Available for Adoption?
  6. Sibling Groups
  7. Who Can Adopt?
  8. Qualification Requirements for Adopting Parents
  9. Your Adoption Options
  10. Agency Adoption
  11. Private (or Independent) Adoption
  12. Options in Independent Adoption
  13. Adoption Facilitators
  14. International Adoption
  15. Foster Adoption
  16. Stepparent Adoption
  17. Transracial Adoption
  18. Special Needs Adoption
  19. Military Adoption
  20. Making an Adoption Plan
  21. Selecting an Adoption Professional
  22. Getting an Adoption Homestudy
  23. Adoption Costs
  24. Why Do Costs Seem So High?
  25. Help Handling the Costs of Adoption
  26. The Adoption Tax Credit
  27. Adoption Subsidies
  28. Employer Adoption Benefits
  29. Networking & Networking Tools
  30. Legal Issues in Adoption
  31. Evaluating Adoption Risks
  32. Open Adoption
  33. Breastfeeding the Adopted Child
  34. Coping With the Wait
  35. Glossary of Terms
  36. Recommended Reading
  37. Conclusion
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