What To Know When You’re Adopting From Another State (Or Internationally)

Some states have the same laws, some vary.

Rebecca Tillou March 13, 2017
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Adoption rules, regulations and laws vary from state to state and country to country. There will be some things that are the same and some that are different. The first thing you should do is read the adoption rules and regulations in the state or country you are adopting from. These rules and regulations can be given to you by the adoption agency you are using. If you are not using an agency, thank goodness for the internet.

You can google the state and adoption laws, and there should be more than one article pointing you in the right direction. I googled just to see what came up, and I found this awesome site and this one. Now, the rules and regulations may change over the years, so once you review a website, it is always best to reach out to a state legislator or an adoption agency. Even if you are not looking to use the agency you call, they will most likely have the information you are looking for in that state.

If you are looking to adopt overseas, this website may be very helpful: our very own adoption.com has an incredible resource! Here is another site as well I found while perusing the internet.

I am always intrigued at the different laws that come into play once you bring the child home. Many states have a certain amount of time that consent becomes irrevocable. Some states have the same laws, some vary. Overseas varies as well, depending on the country. When one is considering adoption, they can’t look at one state or one country and make those laws apply to every state and country. It doesn’t work that way, and if people choose to think that way, they will find themselves up against many brick walls and many obstacles that will need to be overcome.

I think a good starting point may be to reach out to families who have recently adopted from the state or country you are considering. I say recently because as stated above, laws and regulations are subject to change. Another positive of finding a family that recently adopted to help you understand the legislation is that they can understand your emotions and be there with you in the moment.

I believe every state and every country you will adopt from will require proof of identification.  Many states will require home visits/home studies. Please be aware of this, but please don’t go berserk and clean all the floors in your house with a toothbrush and make your house look like a house that can’t even be lived in, it is so impeccable. The people conducting these home studies understand you may work full time, and if not, you have a life and it doesn’t revolve around cleaning your house every day. With that said, I would not leave dishes in the sink that are a week old, but don’t sweat it if there is a coffee cup from that morning.

Adoption is full of rules, regulations, laws and so many emotions bombarding you all at once. It is also one of the most exciting, life fulfilling acts you will ever be apart of. So, if you feel you are ready to dive into adopting, then take a seat, take a deep breath and start GOOGLING!

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Rebecca Tillou

Rebecca was adopted as an infant. She found her birth family in May of 2013 and continues to keep in touch with them. Sadly, her birth mother passed away in 1999. She and her husband live in New York and are the parents of two beautiful little boys, Dominic and Nicolas. They also have a German Shepherd mix named Chester. She was recently diagnosed with FASD at 34 years of age. She is currently working with nofas.org and thearg.org to get the word out that there is hope, and that you are never too old to better yourself.


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