Adopting a child through the foster care system can be a great option for many. There’s a large pool of children in the foster care system—estimates put the number at or around 200,000. The costs of adopting through the foster care system are typically far less than through a traditional adoption and many states offer monthly benefits to parents who adopt foster children. You may also be able to provide health care coverage for the child through your state’s Medicaid program.
But there are also challenges. Many children in foster care are older—nearly a third have been in foster care for at least three years. They’ve most likely had a range of experiences—good and bad—that have helped shape their character, and which may require special care. Here are some tips to help make a foster care adoption successful.
- Avoid “ideal child” syndrome — It’s natural to want to view a child as “perfect,” but every biological parent will tell that’s not realistic. For children in foster care, the negative experiences will likely outweigh the positive ones. There are reasons they are in foster care—there may have been drugs or sexual abuse or exposure to physical abuse or neglect.
- Don’t spring the foster child on your existing family — You’ll want to fully discuss the adoption with all members of your family before you bring the child home. If you don’t, the children in your home will likely feel threatened and may ostracize the new adoptee.
- Foster a child (or two) before you adopt through the foster care system — This will help you understand the unique challenges related to adopting a child through the foster care system, but will still allow you to evaluate whether a permanent adoption is the right thing to do.
Contact Our Office
To set up an appointment, call us in Haddonfield at 856-429-5005 or in Woodbury at 856-845-2555. We can also be reached in Philadelphia at 215-563-2150 or by e-mail. For clients with personal injury or workers’ compensation claims, we offer a free initial consultation, and will represent you on a contingency basis, only charging attorney fees if we recover compensation for you.
Our offices are open weekdays between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Weekend and evening appointments may be arranged upon request. We will also come to your home or the hospital, if necessary.