5. What are the steps involved in adoption?
The steps vary based on the types of adoption. The basics are:
Step 1: Research and decide on what kind of adoption you're interested in
Step 2: Confirm that you meet the requirements to complete that type of adoption
Step 3: Choose an agency, law firm, country, facilitator, or private adoption path
Step 4: Have a homestudy performed. In a homestudy, a licensed social worker will gather information about you and will visit your home to ensure that your family will provide a safe, loving environment for a child. You will need to answer questions about your background and history as individuals and as a couple/family (if married and/or you already have kids), and show you can financially support a child. You will need references from people who can attest to your ability to parent.
Step 5: Go into the waiting pool, however that may look for your type of adoption. For international, you will wait to be matched with a child. For domestic adoption, you'll put together a profile (basically a scrapbook of you) for expectant parents to look at and decide if they want you to parent their child. For foster adoption, you will have a caseworker assigned to you who will facilitate any potential matches
Step 6: Matched! Meet the child, take the child home, all that good stuff you've been waiting for
Step 7: Post-placement visits. A social worker will visit your home, make sure the transition is going well, and write reports attesting to that
Step 7a: termination of parental rights. This may still have to happen via the courts in a foster-adopt situation. In domestic adoption, it may be done voluntarily by one or both birth parents, or one may voluntarily sign TPR but the other will be done via the courts. As with much of adoption, it varies
Step 8: finalization! Attend court and your child is officially and forever a part of your family! I believe this is automatically part of the process of leaving a child's country of birth in international adoption