How Much Does It Cost To Adopt A Child With American Adoptions?

A List of Private Adoption Costs

How much does it cost to adopt a child? Well, it first depends on the type of adoption you are pursuing: domestic, international or foster care adoption. And then it depends on the adoption professional you choose to work with.

There are many factors in determining how much it costs to adopt a child with American Adoptions versus other adoption professionals. Our agency strives to protect families’ budgets from exorbitant hidden costs, and offers many valuable advantages in our pricing structures:

1. Fixed Agency Fees – At American Adoptions, total adoption costs differ based on the variable expenses in the adoption – never because of our agency fees. Our agency fees remain fixed regardless of the total cost of the adoption or the number of hours required by our staff to complete the entire adoption process.

2. Refunds – In 2012, 46 percent of adoptive families received a refund from their adoption, ranging from a few hundred dollars to several thousand dollars. American Adoptions always prepares families financially for the worst-case scenario by collecting medical expenses to cover any retainers, co-pays or out-of-pocket medical expenses not covered by Medicaid or other insurances. Once the adoption is finalized, any unused money for medical expenses is given directly back to the adoptive family.

3. No Rollovers – During an adoption disruption, most adoption professionals use a “rollover” process, meaning any remaining fees you haven’t already lost to legal, medical or living expenses are rolled over into a future adoption situation. So what are the disadvantages of this policy?

  • You and your money are stuck with the adoption professional in hopes that you will receive another adoption opportunity, yet there is no guarantee that you will.

  • If you locate an adoption opportunity with another adoption professional, you are unable to pursue it with the money you’ve already invested.

  • If the adoption professional goes out of business, your money is lost forever.

Instead of using the rollover process, American Adoptions makes it very simple for families with our Risk-Sharing Program. In the event of an adoption disruption, any post-activation money you’ve invested with our agency, such as living expenses, medical expenses, legal expenses, termination expenses and fixed agency fees are directly refunded to you so that you can pursue another adoption situation immediately. Even though some families suffer emotional disappointments, they never suffer financial disappointments.

If you are concerned with how much adopting a child may cost, remember that you set your maximum adoption budget and will be presented adoption situations within or below your budget based on the total cost of the adoption. You may also be presented with adoption situations where the adoption cost is above your budget, based on the birth mother’s circumstances throughout her pregnancy. You are not obligated to accept these adoption opportunities; however, many families have pursued these situations outside of their budget because they were able to adopt sooner.

Here is a list of our average adoption costs:

Traditional Program

  • Range: $32,500-$50,000
  • 58 percent were $36,000-$42,000
  • Only 10 percent were over $44,000

Agency-Assisted Program

  • Range: $26,500-$40,000
  • Only 10 percent were over $35,000

List of Private Adoption Costs with American Adoptions

Some prospective adoptive families wonder why it costs so much to adopt a child, especially when the cost of foster care adoption is minimal.

The number of people, services and processes required to complete a private adoption is too many to list. However, the following is an itemized list of American Adoptions’ services for which private adoption fees are used:

Professional Services for Adoptive Parents

  • Counseling and educational preparation for adopting a child
  • Orientation conferences, meetings and adoption seminars
  • Arrange, coordinate and oversee entire adoption process
  • Support and education throughout adoption process
  • Contact with home study professional
  • Hospital documentation, retrieval of medical records
  • General case management services and file documentation
  • Risk-Sharing Program in the event of a disruption
  • Post-adoption support gatherings and events

Professional Services for Birth Parents

  • Screening and evaluating of birth parents’ commitment to adoption
  • Adoption counseling and education
  • 24/7 support throughout adoption process
  • Develop adoption plan around birth mother’s needs and wishes
  • Develop hospital plan and coordinate with health professionals
  • Arrange housing and travel arrangements if necessary
  • Post-placement adoption counseling
  • Birth Mother Scholarship Fund

Birth Parent Expenses

Newborn Care and Services

  • Hospital costs not covered by Medicaid or insurance
  • Original birth certificates
  • Physical examinations by a pediatrician
  • Any necessary foster care services

Legal Expenses

  • Termination of parental rights, including publications, court costs, attorney fees
  • Finalization of adoption
  • Legal counsel for adoptive family and birth mother based on state laws
  • Court reporting services

Investigative Expenses

  • State and local background screenings
  • State abuse registry clearances
  • Diligent search for birth fathers

Adoptive Family and Birth Parent Correspondence


  • Extensive advertising: Google/Bing, Yellow Pages, Crisis Pregnancy Centers
  • Adoptive Family Profile
  • Adoptive Family Video Profile
  • Website Updates and Maintenance

Office Expenses

  • Rent
  • Phones
  • Office Supplies
  • Postage
  • Utilities


  • Salaries
  • Health insurance
  • Mileage reimbursement

This is just a brief look into the overall process of growing a family through adoption. To learn more details about how much it costs to adopt a child with American Adoptions, call 1-800-ADOPTION today, request free adoption information, or get started with American Adoptions.

©2014 American Adoptions - All Rights Reserved    
Call 1-800-ADOPTION