Friday, November 9, 2018

The Difference Between an Agency Adoption and an Independent Adoption

In honor of National Adoption Awareness Month (November), this week's blog is going to be all about adoption. Adopting a child near the Lake of the Ozarks is a big decision. While adoption can be a lengthy process, our Lake Ozark law firm is here to help guide you through the process. If you are thinking about adopting a child, take a look below to learn about two common types of adoption.

Agency Adoption:

  • Birth parents surrender child to agency, which later places child with adoptive parents.
  • The adoption agency serves as the intermediary.
  • Birth parents often do not know the identity of adoptive parents and may not have any biographical information about them. Agency maintains anonymity.
  • Birth parents usually will not have had any contact with the adoptive parents. The agency serves as the intermediary.
  • Birth parents usually have released the child for adoption before the child is placed in adoptive home. If release has not been obtained, placement is called “legal-risk adoption.”
  • Infant may be placed in foster care until all the releases have been signed and all waiting periods have passed.
  • Agency social worker often selects the parents for a specific child.
  • Adoptive parents have sought out an agency, filed an application, been approved, and waited for the agency to assign a child to them.

Independent Adoption:

  • Birth parents consent to place child directly with the adoptive parents.
  • Various intermediaries—attorneys, physicians, teachers—may be used to help facilitate the placement.
  • Birth parents may know the identity of the adoptive parents and may have biographical information about them. Varying degrees of anonymity maintained.
  • Birth parents often have been in contact with the adoptive parents—either by telephone or in person.
  • Birth parents usually surrender child for adoption after the child is residing in the adoptive home. Birth parents may have right to remove child from home.
  • Infant usually placed in adoptive home after discharge from the hospital.
  • Birth parents often select the adoptive parents for their child.
  • Adoptive parents often are actively involved in searching for an infant to adopt.
Information Source:  17:8.Agency adoptions, 21 Mo. Prac., Family Law § 17:8 (3d ed.)

As you can see from the above information, the two option types have different parameters and timelines associated with each. Depending on your unique situation, our adoption attorney at the Lake of the Ozarks can help you decide which option is best for you and your family. 

Now that you a little more about these two adoption options, you can better prepare for your adoption. If you are interested in adopting a child in mid-Missouri, contact Gibbons Law Firm today. We can help walk you through the legal aspects of adoption and guide you through the entire process. This is an exciting time in your life and we are honored to be a part of it!

Remember, your initial consultation with Gibbons Law Firm is always free.

Your Trusted Legal Resource

Gibbons Law Firm
2820 Bagnell Dam Blvd, Suite B4
Lake Ozark, MO 65049
(573) 348-2211

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