How to Choose Where Your Adopted Child Will Be From
According to the U.S. Department of State, there were 4,714 children born in foreign countries who were then adopted by American parents in the 2016-17 fiscal year. Therefore, you certainly won’t be alone in your desire to adopt an international child. However, is that necessarily in your best interest?
LGBTQ Couples May Be Banned from Adoption in Some Areas
If you are a part of the LGBTQ community, you won’t be able to adopt a child from China, India or Ethiopia. However, it is legal to do so in all 50 American states. This is based on a series of rulings from the Supreme Court. It may just be easier for you to adopt an American child in such a scenario as opposed to attempting to do so internationally.
How Much Money Do You Make?
Let’s say that you wanted to adopt a child in South Korea. To do so, you would be required to have an income that is higher than the median average in the United States. For the most part, an adoption court in New Jersey would look at whether an individual can reasonably provide for a child. Therefore, you would only need to make a stable income that would be adequate enough to pay for food, shelter and other basic needs that a minor would likely have.
How Old Are You?
If you are between the ages of 30 and 50, you are likely able to adopt a child in most countries throughout the world. In some cases, you can adopt children as soon as you turn 18, assuming that there is a sufficient age gap between you and the child. As a general rule, you would need to be 10 to 15 years older than the child. New Jersey law says that you have to be 10 years older than the child you want to adopt. Our NJ adoption lawyer may be able to explain any other rules that may apply in your case.
Do You Have Time and Money to Visit the Child?
To adopt a child in Haiti, you must take two trips to the island totaling as many as 22 days altogether. The first trip lasts for 15 days while the second lasts for two to seven days. If you want to adopt a child in Uganda, you must first foster that child in the country for a year. If you are a New Jersey resident looking to adopt a child in New Jersey, the child will first be fostered in your home for six months, so there may not be a need to take time off from work or spend thousands of dollars on travel to adopt at home.
What Is Your Adoption Timeline?
In many foreign countries, it can take several months to receive a referral from an adoption agency. After the referral is made, it can take several more months or years before the adoption becomes official. For instance, it can take two months for a referral and another five months before the adoption of a Colombian child becomes official. If you are looking to adopt a child from Taiwan, it can be 16 months for a referral and another nine months for placement.
If you are looking to adopt a child in New Jersey, it may be possible to receive the child within days of a parent signing a surrender document. However, the birth parent may be able to revoke the surrender until parental rights are official terminated. This generally happens at a hearing that takes place three to four months after receiving the child. Regardless, a birth parent or adoption agency may place the child in your care within days or weeks of the adoption being agreed to.
Adopting a child can be a complex process, but our NJ adoption lawyer may be able to make it easier on you. If you are looking to adopt a child at home or internationally, contact Cofsky & Zeidman in Haddonfield by calling (856) 429-5005.