Guidance for single individuals, married people, domestic partners, and gay men and women.As a rule, any adult that is deemed to be a “fit parent” can adopt a child, but many states have special conditions for adoptive parents. In a couple of states, adoptive parents are required to be a specific number of years older than the child. In others, prospective parents are required be state residents for a specified period of time before they are permitted to adopt. When you’re adopting via an agency, you might also have to fulfill additional agency requirements, which are usually more strict than state laws. Additionally, some individuals or couples are probable to have more challenges adopting than others. For example, a lesbian couple or single man might have a more challenging time finding a placement than a married heterosexual couple is going to, even though theoretically they should be allowed to adopt. This happens because all states look to the ” child’s best interests” when making a placement decision. A lot of state courts or agencies are going to use the “best interests” debate to judge a potential adoptive parent or couple in accordance to predetermined biases about who makes an ideal or a fit parent. And often times birth parents that are placing their children through an agency for adoption have some of the same biases. Below are the issues or roadblocks some individuals are likely to face.
Different Race or Ethnic BackgroundYou are not required to be the identical race as the child you wish to adopt, but other states do give a penchant to potential adoptive parents of the same ethnic background or race of the child. Adoptions for Native American children are regulated by a federal law — the Indian Child Welfare Act — that lays out particular rules and guidelines that are required to be adhered to when adopting a Native American child.
Lesbians and Gay MenOnly Florida and Utah particularly restrict gay men and lesbians from adopting children, but that does not mean it’s not challenging to adopt in other states. Even when sexual orientation is not particularly mentioned in a state adoption regulation, it can turn into an issue in court. Many judges are going use it to deem a prospective adoptive parent to be unsuitable. Additionally, in some states it is challenging for a lesbian or gay person or couple to locate an agency that is going to work with them. Nevertheless, gay men and lesbians throughout the country do adopt children, and an increasingly number of states are enabling gay and lesbian couples to jointly adopt. On the other hand, lesbians and gay men are going to need a knowledgeable attorney to manage an adoption. Do your research: The National Center for Lesbian Rights at www.nclrights.org offers details for gay men and lesbians wish to adopt.
Single PeopleBeing single you might have to wait longer for a placement or be adaptable about the child you adopt. Agencies usually “reserve” healthy babies and younger children for two-parent families, placing single people towards the bottom of their waiting lists. And birth parents themselves usually want their children to be put in two-parent homes. When you’re a single person wanting to adopt, you should be ready to make a proper case for your suitability as a parent. You can anticipate for case workers to inquire why you’re not married, how you plan to support and care for the child by yourself, what is going to happen should you marry, and other questions that are going to put you in the position for defending your standing being a single person. To a lot of single adoptive parents such strict screening doesn’t seem just, but it is routine. Agencies serving those with special needs might be a good option for singles, since they usually cast a more extensive search when considering adoptive parents. Being adaptable about your choices is going to make it easier to overcome the opposition to single-parent adoptions.
Domestic PartnersThere is no particular restriction against un-married couples’ adopting children (often referred to as a two-parent adoption). Like singles, nevertheless, you might discover that agencies are prejudiced towards married couples. You might have a longer waiting period for a child, or you might have to broaden your ideas concerning the child you are willing to adopt.
Nolo. (2011, October 10). Who can adopt a child? www.nolo.com. Retrieved September 6, 2022, from https://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/who-can-adopt-child-30291.html