How do I know the adoptive family will provide a safe environment to raise my child?
All of our prospective adoptive parents go through extensive FBI clearance and state background checks. Social workers meet them in their homes to interview them and the homes are inspected for safety. The couples are required to provide a State Bureau of Investigation report and a child abuse clearance report as well as birth certificates, a copy of their marriage license, and physician’s reports that include HIV test results. They provide financial statements of all their assets and debts. They are required to submit their federal income tax forms. References are required. Adoptive families are carefully screened.
Find out more about the Home Study process here.
Will I be able to meet the adoptive family in person?
Yes, if you wish they can come meet you before the baby is born and you can have as much or as little of a relationship with the adoptive family as you want. You also have the opportunity to talk with them over the phone throughout the pregnancy. You can call to let them know how your doctor’s visits are going. If the family is able, and you are willing, they can even attend a doctor’s appointment with you.
You will know as much information about the adoptive family as we can legally give you.
However, if you prefer to have a closed adoption with the adoptive family, that is also available and there will be no contact.
Who will help me understand my adoption decision and deal with the loss of my child?
The decision to choose adoption is not an easy one to make on your own. Although it may be a difficult and painful choice, we will be there to provide support, including counseling, if you would like.
Can I make an Adoption Plan without the Birth Father’s Consent?
Yes, if the birth father will not give his consent, or if you are unable to locate him, the attorney for the agency will complete the legal process to terminate his parental rights. Our Adoption Counselors will explain the adoption process or we can put you in touch with an attorney who will explain the termination process.
Find out more birth father information here.
Can I have contact with my baby while I am in the hospital?
You can see your baby as often as you want while you are in the hospital. Your Adoption Counselor will help you make that decision and will help you develop a hospital plan that works emotionally for you.
If the adoptive parents live out of state, they must remain in Arizona for about 2 weeks after the birth while state mandated paperwork is completed. Often birth mothers and the adoptive parents will make arrangements to get together during this time. We strive to respect the birth mother’s wishes for contact.
When will the adoptive family take the baby home?
In most situations, the adoptive family is at the hospital while the birth mother is in labor. If you would like, the family can even be in the delivery room with you. The agency suggests if they are from out of the area that they come to Arizona a day or two before your estimated due date. If you deliver early, they will be on the next flight out of their home town.
Under ideal situations the baby leaves the hospital with the adoptive parents. Most times, both you and the baby will be discharged from the hospital at the same time. Your Adoption Counselor will be with you during this emotional time.
Is transitional care ever involved? What is transitional care?
In extreme cases, when the adoptive family is unable to arrive before the baby is released from the hospital, we will place the baby in cradle care. The families who provide care for the child during this short period of time are screened as intensively as the adoptive family. This is a rare occurence.
Do I have to go in front of a Judge or go to court to give my consent?
The consents to the adoption are not taken in front of a judge unless (1) a child falls under the Indian Child Welfare Act or (2) the birth mother’s mental capacity is questioned. You will not be required to go to court for adoption consent.
Will I have to find my own adoption attorney for the consent?
We will provide an attorney for you as well as pay his or her fee. The agency will cover all of your legal fees for the adoption.
Will I be able to know about my child’s health and well-being after his or her birth?
Ongoing correspondence is definitely an option for you as a birth mother. We require that the adoptive family be open to sending pictures and letters at least once a year until the child reaches the age of 18. You are also able to send the adoptive family letters and pictures for the baby through the agency.
The amount of contact you have is dependent on the openness of the adoption and your relationship with the adoptive family.