The following information will give you an overview of how to adopt a child in Massachusetts. If you’re considering adopting a child in MA, learning more about the process of adoption will help you to decide if this is the right family-building method for you.
The Massachusetts child adoption process is a wonderful way to grow a family, but it’s not the right path for everyone. The first step you should take if you’re thinking about adopting in MA is to educate yourself about both the difficulties and benefits of adoption in Massachusetts.
Before beginning the newborn adoption process, couples must be equally on board with the process of adopting a child in Massachusetts. Many couples must first address grief from infertility or release their dream to have a biological child before they can truly move toward their new dream of the MA child adoption process.
If you’re ready to choose adoption, you’ll need to decide which type of Massachusetts adoption you want to pursue, keeping in mind the different adoption requirements and different child adoption processes for each type of adoption in MA, including:
For families who wish to adopt an infant within the U.S. it’s recommended that you work with a domestic adoption agency like American Adoptions.
A national adoption agency can offer you the full range of services necessary to adopt a child in Massachusetts, and they can work with both birth and adoptive parents in MA and across the United States. Local adoption agencies in Massachusetts are restricted to working within the immediate area.
The requirements, restrictions and costs associating with adopting a child internationally in Massachusetts will vary depending on the country you adopt a child from as well as the professional you work with.
Learn more about international adoption in Massachusetts here.
Working with a trusted licensed adoption professional rather than attempting to complete elements of the adoption on your own will protect you, expectant parents and children from adoption scams, unethical practices and more.
Learn about the different types of Massachusetts adoption professionals to help you decide which agency is right for your adoption in MA, including their pros and cons, as well as what services they offer.
When you’ve decided which MA adoption professional to work with, you’ll begin the adoption process, which starts by outlining your dream adoption. This stage in the Massachusetts adoption process often involves a lot of paperwork!
For adoptive families working with American Adoptions, you’ll fill out your Adoption Planning Questionnaire (APQ), create your adoption profile, complete your Massachusetts adoption home study and more.
Once you’ve been approved to adopt in Massachusetts by completing all of these steps, your family’s adoption profile will be shown to expectant mothers looking for adoptive parents.
From the time your adoption profile begins being shown to expectant parents, it can take several weeks or several months before you’ll enter into an adoption opportunity with an expectant parent who’s chosen you as their baby’s prospective parents.
Your adoption wait time will vary. Your openness to a wide range of prospective birth mothers and post-adoption communication with the birth family, as well as the personal preferences that each expectant mother has when searching for parents for her child, will affect your wait time.
However, 75 percent of people who adopt through American Adoptions are placed with their child within 1 to 12 months once their adoption profile becomes active.
A baby’s biological parents may not execute their consent to an adoption in Massachusetts any sooner than four days after the birth of the baby. American Adoptions is able to provide both birth and adoptive parents with their own legal representation, so everyone is fully informed about the legal process of adoption in MA.
Adoptive parents who work with a national adoption agency like American Adoptions may be adopting a child outside of Massachusetts, so they must comply with the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children (ICPC) prior to returning home to Massachusetts with their child. But if you live in state and also adopt a child in Massachusetts, you won’t be required to complete the ICPC process for your adoption. Any time a child is adopted across state lines, ICPC must be adhered to, including out-of-state families who adopt a child who is born in MA.
When you return home to Massachusetts, you must complete the required post-placement visits with your home study provider, and then an adoption finalization hearing will be scheduled for several months after your baby’s placement.
Your local probate court holds jurisdiction for adoption matters in Massachusetts, so that’s where you’ll go for your adoption finalization. The finalization grants your legal parental rights and ends the Massachusetts adoption process with the final decree of adoption.
No adoption in Massachusetts truly ends with finalization; adoption lasts a lifetime for all involved. Your relationship with your child’s birth family will also likely continue into the future.
An open adoption in Massachusetts keeps contact between birth and adoptive families open throughout the adoptee’s life, so that the families can share whatever post-adoption relationship they’re all comfortable and happy with.
For birth parents who want more indirect contact with their child’s family, American Adoptions can mediate communication for up to 18 years after a Massachusetts adoption is completed.
Want to learn more about how to adopt a baby in Massachusetts? Request free Massachusetts adoption information online or call 1-800-ADOPTION now!
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