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ADOPTION IN
Virginia
Virginia

Domestic Infant Adoptions can be completed through an adoption agency or adoption attorney. Click here for a directory of adoption service providers in Virginia.

International Adoptions must be completed through an adoption agency or adoption attorney. Find an international adoption service provider here.

Foster Care Adoptions in Virginia can be completed through the Department of Social Services (804-726-7000). Gallery of children waiting to be adopted.

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The information contained on this website is for educational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional legal advice. Always seek the advice of a licensed and qualified professional. While the content of this website is frequently updated, information changes rapidly and therefore, some information may be out of date, and/or contain inaccuracies, omissions or typographical errors.


 

Can I Adopt in Virginia?

Parents must be at least 18 years old to adopt. You can be single, married, or divorced. Parents will need to pass an adoption home study to become approved for adoption.

 

What Adoption Regulations Exist in Virginia?

Advertising: Physicians, attorneys, or members of clergy may recommend a child open for adoption but may not receive payment for the recommendation. § 63.2-1218; 63.2-1225

 

Relinquishment: Birth fathers may consent before birth. In direct placements, the child must be at least 3 days old before parents give their consent. Consent may be revoked before a final adoption order on the ground of fraud, or if both birth and adoptive parents mutually agree to terminate the consent. § 63.2-1202; 63.2-1233

 

Birth parent expenses: Payment of the following expenses is permitted: pregnancy related medical expenses, counseling for the birth mother, living expenses when the birth mother cannot work due to pregnancy, legal fees, and transportation to these services. § 63.2-1218

 

Post-adoption contact agreements: Contact agreements are legally enforceable in court. Parents may seek civil action and monetary damages as a result of broken contact agreements. § 63.2-1228.1; 63.2-1220.3; 63.2-1220.4

 

Birth father rights: Unmarried fathers wishing to receive notice of adoption proceedings may file their information with the State's paternity registry before or up to 10 days after the child’s birth. § 63.2-1249; 63.2-1250

Finalization: The average time between TPR and adoption finalization in 2014 was 16.2 months.

Review Virginia adoption laws in detail

 

Is Adoption Assistance Available in Virginia?

Many of the children waiting to be adopted in Virginia have special needs. Federal (Title IV-E) and state (non-IV-E) programs exist to help adoptive parents meet their child’s needs. In Virginia, the maximum monthly amount ranges from $450-690. For more information on adoption assistance please visit NACAC.org.

 

Can I adopt a Child from another country?

It is always possible to adopt a child from another country, even if you live in the United States. Children under 18 adopted from a Hague Convention country entering the U.S. with an IH-3 visa may automatically receive U.S. citizenship.

 

Children adopted from a non convention country must qualify as orphans before receiving U.S. citizenship. When U.S. citizens finalize an adoption abroad, they must apply to the USCIS for an IR-3 visa for the child. An IR-3 visa classifies the child as an immigrant and may provide the child with citizenship upon arrival in the States.

 

Virginia gives full effect to foreign adoption decrees completed in compliance with US and foreign laws. Readoption in Virginia is an option but not a requirement. Parents wishing to receive a U.S. birth certificate for their child may submit documentation of a foreign adoption decree.

 

State Contacts

 

Gallery of children waiting to be adopted: https://adoption.com/photolisting?page=3&search_type=state&range=52

 

State subsidy contact person:

Ms. T.B. Jones, MSW

Adoption Program Manager

Virginia Department of Social Services

Division of Family Services

801 E. Main Street, 11th Floor

Richmond, VA 23219-2901

804-726-7537

Fax: 804-726-7499

Traci.Jones@dss.virginia.gov

 

 

Summary

Adoptions in Virginia can be completed through the Department of Social Services.

 

Parents must be at least 18 years old to adopt. You can be single, married, or divorced. Parents will need to pass an adoption home study.

 

Physicians, attorneys, or members of clergy may recommend a child open for adoption but may not receive payment for the recommendation.

 

Birth fathers may consent before birth. In direct placements, the child must be at least 3 days old before parents give their consent. Consent may be revoked before a final adoption order on the ground of fraud.

 

Payment of the following expenses is permitted: pregnancy related medical expenses, counseling for the birth mother, living expenses, legal fees, and transportation to these services.

Contact agreements are legally enforceable in court. Unmarried fathers wishing to receive notice of adoption proceedings may file their information with the State's paternity registry.

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