How to Adopt in Mississippi
Everything You Need to Know to Adopt a Baby in MS
Learning more about how to adopt a child in Mississippi can help you to determine if it’s the right family-building option for you. The following guide can help.
If you have questions about the MS adoption process, call us at 1-800-ADOPTION, or read on for an overview of how to adopt a child in Mississippi below:
Choosing to Pursue a MS Adoption
There are many ways that you can grow your family, and although the Mississippi newborn adoption process is a great option, it’s not going to be the right option for everyone.
Before adopting a child in Mississippi, there are several things that must be considered first. For example, if you experienced infertility, you’ll need to address any residual grief before moving on to adoption. Prospective adoptive couples must share the same goals and expectations for adoption prior to beginning the Mississippi child adoption process.
Choosing Your Mississippi Adoption Professional
Once you’ve decided that adoption is the right path for your family, you’ll need to decide which adoption professional you want to work with to complete your adoption in Mississippi. The type of adoption that you choose and the corresponding requirements for that type of child adoption in Mississippi may affect your decision. Those types of adoption in MS include:
Domestic infant adoption
This is the preferred method for families who want to adopt an infant in Mississippi. National domestic adoption agencies like American Adoptions are recommended, as they’re able to provide all of the services needed to adopt a child in Mississippi or anywhere else in the country. Smaller local agencies are only able to work with birth and adoptive parents in their area of Mississippi, unlike national agencies.
Foster care adoption
For families who are open to children of different ages and needs, a foster care adoption in MS is a great option. About 30 percent of children in Mississippi foster care will become legally available for adoption, and many of these children are older, part of a sibling group, or have additional needs.
Learn more about the requirements of foster care adoption in Mississippi here, or begin the process of a foster care adoption in Mississippi here.
If you’re comfortable with not knowing much about a child’s background, an international adoption in MS could be a good option for you. The requirements, costs and restrictions of adopting a child internationally will vary based on the country you adopt a child from as well as the adoption professional you work with.
Learn more about international adoption in Mississippi here, or find an agency to begin the intercountry adoption process here.
Starting the Process of Adoption in MS
After establishing the Mississippi adoption professional you want to work with, you can begin the adoption process.
At this point, adoptive families working with American Adoptions will complete their Adoption Planning Questionnaire (APQ), their adoption profile, their Mississippi home study and more.
Once you’ve completed these steps, you’ll be approved to adopt in Mississippi on a state, federal and agency level. Then, your adoption profile can be shown to expectant mothers looking for adoptive parents in Mississippi and throughout the U.S.
Entering into a MS Adoption Opportunity with Expectant Parents
From the time your adoption profile goes active on our website, it can take a few weeks or a few months for an expectant parent to select you for an adoption opportunity. Seventy-five percent of the families who adopt a child through American Adoptions are placed with a child within 1 to 12 months once their adoption profile goes active.
This variation in adoption wait time is due to a number of factors, including your openness to different adoption opportunities in your APQ, as well as the personal preferences of individual expectant mothers who are searching for adoptive families.
Once a prospective birth mother selects you as potential adoptive parents for her baby, you may have the opportunity to get to know her with the guidance and support of your adoption specialist. You can continue building your relationship until the baby is born, at which time you will travel to the hospital for placement!
How to Finalize an Adoption in Mississippi
The last step of adoption in MS is adoption finalization. This occurs several months after placement.
Before this can happen, there are several steps that must take place. First, the biological parents of the child will need to consent to the adoption in accordance with Mississippi adoption consent laws, no sooner than 72 hours after the birth of their child.
American Adoptions provides legal counsel for both birth and adoptive families so that both parties have someone to guide them through the legal step of adoption in MS and they can make fully informed decisions.
When working with a national adoption agency like American Adoptions, it’s common to adopt a child from outside of Mississippi. In those situations, the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children (ICPC) process must be observed before you can return home to Mississippi with your child after placement. The ICPC process occurs anytime children are adopted across state lines to ensure that those children are going to safe homes, so this is equally necessary for families who live outside of MS and adopt a child from Mississippi. If you live in MS and adopt a child in Mississippi, ICPC won’t be necessary for your adoption.
Post-placement study requirements will also need to be met after you’ve returned home to Mississippi with your child, and then your adoption finalization hearing will be scheduled to take place in your local district court several months later. At the hearing, you’ll be granted your legal parental rights and the final decree of adoption, which is the final legal step of the Mississippi adoption process.
Life After Adoption in MS
Adoptions in Mississippi may technically end with finalization, but they’re an ongoing emotional journey for everyone involved. American Adoptions encourages open adoptions whenever situations allow, as studies have shown them to be beneficial for birth and adoptive parents, but especially for adoptees.
Open adoptions in Mississippi let birth and adoptive families remain in contact forever. There is no single way to have an open adoption. While some birth parents look forward to direct phone calls, emails and in-person meetings, other birth parents prefer to have more indirect contact with the adoptive family through a semi-open adoption. Your adoption speicialist will inform you of a prospective birth mother's contact wishes when you first receive your adoption opportunity.
Call us at 1-800-ADOPTION to learn more about how to adopt a baby in Mississippi with our agency, or request free Mississippi adoption information online now.
Information available through these links is the sole property of the companies and organizations listed therein. American Adoptions, Inc. provides this information as a courtesy and is in no way responsible for its content or accuracy.