Adoption Assistance for Children Adopted From Foster Care

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This information was taken directly from Child Welfare Information Gateway

In every State, children with special needs are waiting in foster care for adoptive families. The most recent data suggest that an estimated 115,000 children are available to be adopted from foster care. In the past, the costs of care and services were major obstacles to parents who would otherwise adopt and be suitable parents for children from foster care, and many foster children were not placed for adoption due to this barrier.

The Adoption Assistance and Child Welfare Act of 1980 2 provided the first Federal subsidies to encourage the adoption of children from the nation’s foster care system. These subsidies, known as adoption assistance, serve to minimize the financial obstacles to adoption. In addition, other types of assistance often are available to help with medical care or other services. Adoption assistance serves to remove barriers and contribute to an increase in adoption of children with special needs.

Continue to Adoption Assistance for Children Adopted From Foster Care: Federal Title IV-E Adoption Assistance

Return to Affording Adoption


1 This figure is from the Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System (AFCARS) data for 2009. See research/afcars/tar/report17.htm

2 See Information Gateway’s website for more information on this Act: federal/index.cfm?event=federalLegislation.viewLegis&id=22


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