ADOPTING FAMILY RIGHTS
The best way to avoid problems and complications during the adoption process is to understand your rights and the rights of other parties involved in the adoption and to have a licensed adoption agency or adoption attorney make sure that all the details and all the paperwork are done correctly to protect your rights.
In general, once a child has been placed with you, you have the right and responsibility to care for the child and make sure the child has his/her physical, emotional, and spiritual needs met. However, unless and until the parental rights of the birth mother and birth father have been ended, the child is still theirs. If the child has been in foster care your rights are limited by those given to you by the foster care authority. If the child has been placed directly from the birth parent to you, your rights are limited by what the birth mother and birth father want.
The Rights of an Adopting Family
In general you have the right to select and work with an adoption agency or adoption attorney of your choice. But you have few other rights as relates to the child. It is difficult to relate exactly what your rights are because several variables come into play in order to determine your rights as the prospective adoptive family. For example, your rights can be affected by the type of adoption since whether you are engaging in an international child adoption or a domestic child adoption and whether the adoption is a foster care adoption, an intrastate child adoption or an interstate child adoption, or an adoption done with an adoption facilitator.
Until the parental rights have been ended you have all the responsibility for the child's welfare but none of the rights of a parent.
Additional Help and Resources
To learn more about rights please visit the link Birth Parents Rights. The State Adoption Laws link on this website and another website, ChildAdoptionLaws.com, will allow you to check out your rights under the laws of your state of residence and under the laws of the state in which the rights of the birth mother and birth father are ended.
Adoption Services has extensive experience with both the voluntary and involuntary termination of parental rights. We are able to help you with an international adoption or a domestic adoption regardless of the state in which you reside. Please visit our home page to read about our commitment to assist adoptive parents like you as well as pregnant women and birth parents.
LawAndParents offers information source for parents wishing to learn about their legal responsibilities and their rights in relation to their children.