Colorado Adoption Guide

Everything you need to know to adopt in Colorado.

Kylee Hooper March 01, 2016

Welcome, prospective adoptive parents! This guide was written to provide you with a single place to find information about adoption in Colorado. It will walk you through everything from laws that will impact your adoption to reviews of adoption service providers in Colorado.

We’ve divided this guide into five parts: first, general information about adopting in Colorado, then sections dedicated to domestic infant adoption (starting in slide 6) foster adoption (slide 18),  international adoption (slide 25), and stepparent adoption (slide 28). And don’t miss our slide filled with links to helpful adoption resources (slide 31) .

Are you interested in growing your family through domestic infant adoption? Click here to connect with an adoption professional who can answer your questions.

Please note:
1. Please note:

Although care has been taken to ensure the accuracy, completeness, and reliability of the information provided in this slideshow guide, you should not rely on it to make decisions. Instead, you should rely on licensed professionals in making decisions relative to adoption. The information in this guide is subject to change without notice. Adoption.com is not responsible for the consequences of relying on this information. In no event shall Adoption.com be liable for any direct, indirect, special, or incidental damage resulting from, arising out of, or in connection with the use of this information.

Did You Know?
2. Did You Know?

Fountain, Colorado is the most accurate representation of the American "melting pot". It is considered the one city in the country that best represented the population make-up of the United States.
Source

Adoption in Colorado at a Glance 
3. Adoption in Colorado at a Glance 

Kids in foster care available for adoption in 2012: 1,715      
Foster adoptions completed in 2012: 798      
International adoptions completed in 2012:  275    
   

Can I Adopt in Colorado?
4. Can I Adopt in Colorado?

Adoption requirements in the state of Colorado are as follows:

Age: at least 21 years old   
Marital Status: can be single or married  
Finances: must be able to provide for the child    
Housing:  can rent or have own home        
Personality: have a good personality     
Experience:  none needed         
DISQUALIFYING CRIMES:  In this state, you may not adopt if you have been convicted of any of the following:  homicide, crimes against children, drug abuse, sexual assault or other crimes of battery or abuse.
   
SOURCE      

Developing a Support System
5. Developing a Support System

It’s essential to have a good network of family, friends, and neighbors to support you through your adoption process.

It’s also important to connect with other adoptive parents. You can begin making these connections in our adoption forums. You may also want to consider joining a support group for adoptive parents.

Domestic Infant Adoption in Colorado
6. Domestic Infant Adoption in Colorado

Before you get started, click here to learn more about the overall process of adopting an infant in the United States. Then, because laws and processes vary from state to state, come back to get the details about adoption in Colorado.

Domestic Infant Adoption: Get Professional Help
7. Domestic Infant Adoption: Get Professional Help

According to Colorado Foster Care and Adoption, only the county department of social services or a licensed child placement agency can facilitate an adoption. There needs to be a child placement agency involved in every adoption (except stepparent adoptions) within the State of Colorado. An adoption attorney may assist a client with communication among agencies.

Some people pursuing a private adoption find it beneficial to work with a professional adoption facilitator, an individual or organization that matches birth parents with adoptive parents in exchange for a fee. However, it is illegal to use adoption facilitators in Colorado.  

You can browse and read reviews about adoption service providers in Colorado here.     

For more information about picking an adoption agency, learn about the Top Fifteen Things to Look for In An Adoption Agency.

Domestic Infant Adoption: Complete a Home Study
9. Domestic Infant Adoption: Complete a Home Study

Regardless of whether you complete your adoption, you will need to complete an adoption home study.

Your home study social worker will help educate you about adoption and ensure that you (and your partner, if applicable) meet the requirements outlined on slide four.

Click here to learn more about the Home Study process.

Domestic Infant Adoption: Spread the Word   
10. Domestic Infant Adoption: Spread the Word  

Advertising is allowed in Colorado. This means prospective parents are allowed to place adoption ads.    

One of the most important things you can do while waiting for an adoption match is to let everyone know about your hope to adopt. Many adoption connections are made through word-of-mouth referrals.

Domestic Infant Adoption: Parent Profiles
11. Domestic Infant Adoption: Parent Profiles

If advertising is allowed in your state, creating a profile on Adoption.com Parent Profiles allows you to easily share your story with those considering placing their child for adoption. Features like videos and photos, posts, Pinterest-like favorites, and recommendations and endorsements make it easy to create a profile as unique as you are, increasing the likelihood that you will stand out and connect with that right person.

Rich communication options like video chat and instant messaging make connecting easy. A mobile-responsive design means that you will never be out of reach.
What’s more, Adoption.com receives over 650,000 monthly visits, which means your profile will receive unparalleled exposure. You can even view and monitor your progress through a detailed statistics page.

Ready to get started? Visit adoption.com/profiles

Domestic Infant Adoption: Adoption Navigators
12. Domestic Infant Adoption: Adoption Navigators

Adoption Navigators provides you with quality expertise in sharing your dream of adopting. We provide unparalleled adoption marketing and one-on-one coaching to beautifully show expectant parents who you are and tell your story. With Adoption Navigators you receive premier advertising exposure on Adoption.com, assistance building your profile and creating a video, and expanded reach through social media and search engines such as Google, Bing, and Yahoo!. Adoption.com has more than 16 years of experience helping families connect with potential birth parents.

Let us help you increase your exposure to potential birth parents and decrease your adoption wait time.

Click here to get started.

Creating a listing on Adoption.com Parent Profiles is an excellent way to connect with potential birth parents across the country. If you want to maximize your exposure to potential birth parents and receive personalized coaching and support, consider using Adoption Navigators. Coordinate these services with your adoption professional.

Domestic Infant Adoption: Relinquishment
13. Domestic Infant Adoption: Relinquishment

Birth parents can relinquish their parental rights and allow their child to be considered legally free for adoption.

To do this, you must fill out a petition to relinquish parental rights. This form can be found here.

Domestic Infant Adoption: Birth Father Rights
14. Domestic Infant Adoption: Birth Father Rights

A paternity registry is not addressed in the state statutes. A birth father can relinquish his rights if he has established paternity.

   
    

Domestic Infant Adoption - Laws about Birth Parent Expenses
15. Domestic Infant Adoption - Laws about Birth Parent Expenses

Hopeful adoptive parents and/or an adoption agency may provide legal and living expenses for an expectant mother. There are, however, requirements governing such support.

In Colorado, you cannot pay for the birth mother to relinquish her child. The only expenses that are allowed are those charged by the agency in charge of the adoption.

Domestic Infant Adoption - Post-Adoption Contact Agreements
16. Domestic Infant Adoption - Post-Adoption Contact Agreements

Post adoption contact agreements are not addressed in Colorado's statutes.

Domestic Infant Adoption - Finalization
17. Domestic Infant Adoption - Finalization

You can finalize adoption after the child has been living with you for six months.

 Domestic Infant Adoption – Adopting in Colorado from Out-of-State
18. Domestic Infant Adoption – Adopting in Colorado from Out-of-State

With private (usually domestic infant) adoptions, it is always possible to adopt a child within Colorado, even if you live in a different state.

The Interstate Compact for the Placement of Children (ICPC) was adopted in the 1960s to provide for oversight and protection of children placed for foster care or adoption between states.

If you are adopting a child from another state, you will need to receive permission from the ICPC office in the state where the child is from. Your agency or attorney will send the office copies of your home study and some other paperwork. They will need to approve your packet before you can bring your child home.

Foster Adoption in Colorado    
19. Foster Adoption in Colorado    

Before you get started, click here to familiarize yourself with the overall process of adopting children through foster care. Then, because laws and processes vary from state to state, come back here to get the details about foster adoption in Colorado.    

Foster Adoption - Children Available for Foster Adoption in Colorado
20. Foster Adoption - Children Available for Foster Adoption in Colorado

In 2015, 640 children were adopted from foster care in Colorado. At the beginning of 2016, there are still at least 288 children available for adoption through foster care.   

Colorado does not currently feature children in our photolisting.

Foster Adoption - Get Professional Help
21. Foster Adoption - Get Professional Help

You can complete a foster adoption either through a private agency that is licensed to provide foster care services or directly through your county's Department of Social Services.      

To find adoption agencies in Colorado, click here.

You will still need to complete a home study as part of this process.

Becoming Part of the Foster Care System
22. Becoming Part of the Foster Care System

Becoming a foster family means that you will have the opportunity of caring for children in the foster care system. You may adopt children from foster care.

Colorado allows for children who are considered "legal risk" placements. This means that these children have birth parents who have not yet relinquished their rights. If no hope of reunification is possible, these children are able to be adopted through the foster care system.

Finalization
23. Finalization

You will need to wait until six months after placement to finalize adoption in Colorado.  

Post Adoption Contact Agreements
24. Post Adoption Contact Agreements

Post adoption contact agreements are not addressed in Colorado state law.

Adoption Assistance
25. Adoption Assistance

Colorado provides adoption assistance for families adopting children with special needs, and can receive up to $800 per child for non-recurring expenses.

International Adoption in Colorado
26. International Adoption in Colorado

Before you get started, click here to familiarize yourself with the overall process of international adoption. Then, because laws and processes vary from state to state, come back here to get the details about international adoption in Colorado.

  

International Adoption - Get Professional Help
27. International Adoption - Get Professional Help

With international adoptions, your only choice is to complete your adoption through an agency. Because of the Universal Accreditation Act, all adoption agencies completing international adoptions are required to be credentialed according to federal standards. Make sure to check with any agency before working with them to ensure they have this accreditation in place!

In selecting an international adoption agency, there are Four Essential Criteria you should probably consider. Click here to browse through adoption agencies in Colorado.

In order to be approved to adopt internationally, you will need to complete an international adoption-specific home study.

International Adoption - Post-Adoption Requirements
28. International Adoption - Post-Adoption Requirements

Finalization of international adoptions is not addressed by the state of Colorado. You will however need to request a U.S. birth certificate for your child.

Read more about post-adoption requirements: here

Stepparent Adoption in Colorado
29. Stepparent Adoption in Colorado

Before you get started, click here to familiarize yourself with the overall process of stepparent adoption. Then, because laws and processes vary from state to state, come back here to get the details about stepparent adoption in Colorado.

Stepparent Adoption - Terminating Parental Rights
30. Stepparent Adoption - Terminating Parental Rights

In order for you to adopt the child of your spouse, the corresponding biological parent’s rights will first need to be terminated, either voluntarily or involuntarily.

You will need to consult with an adoption attorney about your desire to adopt. He/she can help you decide if it’s likely that the biological parent would be willing to relinquish rights OR if it would be feasible to pursue involuntary termination of his/her parental rights.

Stepparent Adoption - Petitioning to Adopt
31. Stepparent Adoption - Petitioning to Adopt

Once parental rights have been terminated, you can file a petition to adopt with the courts. You and your spouse will both testify in court regarding the stability of your marital relationship, the bond you’ve developed with your stepchild, and your desire to become the legal parent of your stepchild.

You will generally not be required to complete a background check or home study as part of the stepparent adoption process.

author image

Kylee Hooper

Kylee Hooper is not quite a mother, but she adores babies, and hopes to be able to either foster or adopt someday. When she isn't writing, reading, or editing; she is normally playing her harp or creating an adventure.


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