Domestic Child Adoption
A domestic child adoption involves adopting a child within the country where you reside.
For a U.S. citizen this means adopting a child born in the U.S. or born in another country but who is a U.S. citizen through the birth parents.
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A domestic child adoption can be a private child adoption or an agency child adoption. A private adoption is arranged through an individual (often a lawyer or a physician), a child adoption facilitator, or referral service while an agency child adoption is arranged through an adoption agency. Note that not all attorneys are trained in child adoption matters and not all agencies are licensed and non-profit.
A Domestic Child Adoption
A domestic child adoption can be an open or a closed child adoption. In a closed child adoption, the last names and other identifying information of the birth mother and birth father and that of the adopting family are not known to each other. While many details may be shared, no identifying information (such as last name, addresses, social security numbers, etc.) is exchanged. In an open adoption, the birth mother and/or birth father and adopting parents exchange identifying information.
A domestic child adoption can also be an intrastate child adoption where the birth mother and adopting family live in the same state, or it can be an interstate child adoption where the birth mother and adopting family live in different states. An intrastate child adoption must meet the requirements of only one state. An interstate child adoption must meet the requirements of at least two states as well as the Interstate Compact Act which has been agreed to by all U.S. states and territories.
The distinction among the above types of child adoption is important since each type of child adoption must meet a different set of legal requirements which change from state to state. Understanding the information provided throughout this website is very important and should not just be left to the "experts". After you have reviewed all the appropriate "buttons" on the website, if you want a more personal touch, please feel free to visit AdoptionServices.org or write Dr. Vince Berger.
Each state has a special website and special contacts to help a person or couple who is interested in child adoption. The chart below provides links to child adoption information for every state. An additional child adoption resource for each state is the State Child Welfare website.