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Smith Welch Webb & White Blog

Friday, September 16, 2016

Adoption Does Not Have to Be Expensive: Realistic Alternatives to Private Adoption

As a family law attorney located in Henry County, Georgia, I would like to help dispel the myth that adoption is extremely expensive.  The truth is, adoption does not need to be expensive.  

In an agency or international adoption scenario, costs may escalate into tens of thousands of dollars.  While the costs associated with agency or international adoptions can add up quickly, there are alternatives for people who want to adopt children but lack the financial resources for an expensive process.  The potential costs to adopt should not discourage potential parents from providing a loving home for a child. 

How to Provide a Forever Home without Financial Hardship

If you would like to provide a “forever family” for a child, but lack the financial resources for an expensive adoption, there are different paths you can pursue. 

For example, adopting independently, or through Georgia Division of Family and Children Services (DFACS), costs much less - usually just the attorney’s fees.   For example, if you adopt through the DFACS, the costs of medical exams and drug screens are typically paid by prospective parents, but these are reimbursable.  If you work with a private agency, you may be charged fees for these types of tests, which can add up quickly.  Additionally, in many cases, DFACS will reimburse up to a certain amount of legal fees, which can greatly reduce the cost of this type of adoption.

Adopting independently means finding a child without the help of a formal agency.  This can be accomplished through word-of-mouth, social media or reputable web sites.  Word can travel fast through social networks both online and offline – as family and friends are often eager to help connect a child with a forever home.  

Another financial aspect to keep in mind is that some employers offer an adoption benefit to employees.  Before beginning an adoption process, it is good practice to check with your benefits specialist to find out if this is an option.  Also, I always recommend speaking to an accountant prior to beginning the adoption process, as you may be eligible for the Federal Adoption Tax Credit.

By pursuing adoption independently, or through DFACS, and with the potential benefits from employers and the federal government, adoption is possible for almost any family.   

If you are interested in pursuing adoption, or have questions about other family law issues and need an experienced family law attorney by your side, contact family law attorney Elizabeth Pool O’Neal by calling (770) 775-3188 to schedule an appointment. 

 

Any representations regarding the law in this Blog is made available for educational purposes only as well as to give you general information and a general understanding of the law, not to provide specific legal advice. By using this blog site you understand that there is no attorney client relationship between you and the Blog publisher. The Blog should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed professional attorney in your state.


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