Employer-Provided Adoption Benefits: Eligibility and Conditions

This information was taken directly from Child Welfare Information Gateway

Eligibility and Conditions

Eligibility for adoption benefits usually depends on employment status (for example, policies frequently specify that full-time employees are eligible while temporary employees are not). Employers also might tie eligibility to length of employment or participation in a company- sponsored health plan.

The type of adoption also can affect the benefits offered. For example, some employers do not provide benefits when a stepparent adopts his or her stepchild or stepchildren. Some employers specify that the child being adopted cannot be older than 16 or 18 years. Others offer enhanced benefits for the adoption of a child with special needs.

Employers That Offer Adoption Benefits

Many employers offer some form of adoption benefits. To find out if your company offers adoption benefits, ask your human resource or personnel department.

Wendy’s International sponsors the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption and its Adoption-Friendly Workplace program, which encourages employers to offer adoption benefits and celebrates those who do. Its website includes:

Lists of employers that offer adoption benefits such as financial reimbursement and paid leave for adoption

An annual list of the nation’s “100 Best Adoption-Friendly Workplaces"

A free toolkit and technical assistance for companies wishing to propose or establish an adoption benefits policy

To order a free toolkit or learn more, visit the website:

The Holt International website includes an extensive list of employers that provide benefits that range from financial assistance to granting employees parental leave:


Child Welfare Information Gateway. (2011). Employer-provided adoption benefits.’' Washington DC: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Children’s Bureau.

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