How to Finalize Your Adoption in Indiana
Complete your IN Adoption
In order to finish your adoption process in Indiana, you will need to take the required finalization steps. Once you have completed this step, your child will legally be recognized as the newest addition to your family!
Read on to discover the steps every adoption in Indiana must follow in order to be legally finalized in the state.
But, if you're ready to talk to an adoption specialist about adoption in Indiana, reach out to us through our free online form.
What Does the Termination Process Look Like?
Termination of parental rights (TPR) is a legal process the permanently ends any parental rights and obligations a birth parent has to their child. This can include any legal, emotional, financial, and educational responsibilities within the parent and child relationship. Terminating parental rights will either happen voluntarily or involuntarily. Voluntary termination of parental rights is typically associated with domestic infant adoptions like those completed by American Adoptions, as this is when the birth mother legally consents to the adoption. An involuntary termination is more often associated with adoptions from foster care and is determined by the court.
This process is a critical step, as it allows the child to be adopted. Without terminating the birth parents’ rights, the child cannot be placed for adoption. More information on this process can be found from the Indiana Department of Child Services.
Will I Have to Complete the ICPC Process?
If you are working with a national adoption agency like American Adoptions, it will be possible that you will have to travel across the state line to meet your future child. In this scenario, you will need to understand the ICPC requirements, otherwise known as the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children. This is a legal agreement across all states that allows adoptive parents to participate in interstate adoptions. Both the birth mother’s state and the adoptive family’s state will each review the adoption paperwork in order to follow all state laws.
This process is normally completed by your adoption attorney; however, the adoptive parents will still need to comply with all rules. Even though you may be anxious about the length of the process, leaving the baby’s state before getting approval could jeopardize your adoption.
It is important to be patient during this time, as there are a number of factors that might lengthen your ICPC process. Your home study, state consent laws and government processing times are all factors to consider when waiting for approval.
To learn more about the ICPC process in Indiana, you are welcome to contact the Indiana Department of Child Services. Becoming familiar with the adoption laws in Indiana is another great way to prepare for this process.
What is a Post-Placement Study, and What are the Requirements?
In order for an adoption decree to be granted in Indiana, post-placement supervision must be completed. This supervision is done by a child-placing agency, and the length of this supervision is determined by the court. The purpose of this post-placement study is to determine how the child is developing in their new home, as well as how the adoptive parents are adjusting. Your post-placement supervisor will be able to help with any questions you may have concerning support or additional resources. It is important to be honest during your visit, and think of any questions or concerns you may want to ask your social worker.
What Should I Expect During My Court Hearing?
The Indiana adoption finalization hearing is the last step you will need to complete before your adoption is finalized. Typically, this happens within the year that the child has been placed. Before this hearing, you will need to complete the necessary documents, which your adoption attorney will help you with. This hearing will normally take 30 to 60 minutes and is designed to demonstrate that the adoptive parents are a good fit for their child.
It is generally expected that certain individuals will attend the hearing, including:
- The adoptive parents
- The adoptive family’s lawyer
- In some cases, the agency’s social worker that helped place the child with the adoptive family
Sometimes, the birth parents may also attend if their rights have not been terminated, or if both parties have agreed to an open adoption.
In order to determine if the adoption should occur, the court may ask you a number of questions. These questions may include:
- How will you provide for your new child?
- What are your reasons for adopting?
- Is there anything the court should know before you finalize your adoption?
As soon as your judge signs your final decree of adoption in Indiana, you will officially have legal custody of your child. This will be the beginning of your new family! If you any questions about this process, your adoption specialist will be happy to assist. You can also find more information through the Indiana Department of Child Services website.
If you are interested in learning more about the Indiana adoption process with our agency, you can request free information from American Adoptions or call 1-800-ADOPTION.
Information available through these links is the sole property of the companies and organizations listed therein. American Adoptions provides this information as a courtesy and is in no way responsible for its content or accuracy.