How Much Does Adoption Cost?
About 135,000 children are adopted in the U.S. each year. If you are considering adoption, chances are you are also researching how much the process will cost; the financial expenses associated with adoption vary according to the options you choose, such as a domestic versus an international adoption or a private or a public one. Your New Jersey adoption lawyer can help you better understand the process and choose the options that are best suited for your family.
Private vs. Public Adoption
Private adoptions usually involve a family that adopts a newborn from parents who voluntarily put the child up for adoption. When a family adopts a child from a foster home, the process is referred to as a public adoption. Private adoptions typically require the parents to pay a fee for a home study. The home study fee may range from a few hundred to several thousand dollars. In many cases, the state or local government will cover the costs of a home study for parents who adopt a waiting child from a foster home. Individuals may also avoid fees by fostering a child, though the foster process may involve an elevated level of risk.
Agency vs. Independent Adoption
Parents who opt for an agency adoption may choose one of two routes: agency adoption or independent adoption. During an agency adoption, an agency works with the parents throughout the entire process. The agency even undertakes the task of finding the right expectant mother for couples who enlist their services. Parents who choose the independent route must advertise and network to find the right expectant mother on their own. On average, people who choose independent adoption can expect to save a few thousand dollars on financial expenses. However, both pathways to adoption typically cost more than $30,000.
Domestic vs. International Adoption
International adoptions tend to cost slightly more than domestic ones. There are also other key differences. For example, parents who wish to adopt an infant should choose to adopt domestically because with international adoptions, six to 12 months will typically pass before the child is placed with the adoptive parents. International adoptions also have a greater potential to involve unknowns relating to the child’s birth and the biological mother. Adoptive parents may also be required to budget for costly international travel when adopting a child from another country.
Additional Expenses Associated With Adoption
There are several types of fees that are typically associated with adoption, especially when parents opt to proceed with the process privately. Expectant parents may be required to pay program and application fees that could range from a few thousand dollars to more than $10,000 if they work with an agency. The cost of adoption also may include fees for hiring an attorney.
It is highly advisable that people work with a New Jersey adoption lawyer as the process typically involves complex family law issues in addition to requiring a substantial financial investment. Factoring in adoption attorney costs is critical as consulting with a professional will help you protect your legal rights and financial investment. Parents who wish to adopt a newborn are often required to cover the birth mother’s expenses as well. Whether working with an adoption agency or proceeding with an independent adoption, the parents must also cover the cost of advertising and networking to find the right birth mother and child.
Get the Legal Protection You Need
The adoption process may be as short as one month or as lengthy as one year or even longer. It only makes sense that you would want to protect yourself throughout such a critical process by hiring an adoption attorney. Your New Jersey adoption lawyer can advise you at every step, especially with determining the best road to adoption for your particular circumstances, including choosing an agency if you decide to go that route. If you are unsure about the adoption process, your first call should be to a trustworthy adoption lawyer. Contact Cofsky & Zeidman at our main Haddonfield office by calling (856) 429-5005, and let us assist you as you begin the journey to make your family whole. You can also reach us at our office in Woodbury at (856) 845-2555.