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New Hampshire Adoption Laws: An Overview

States are responsible for establishing their individual adoption laws, so there are 50 sets of different adoption laws within the U.S. This is why it’s important for potential adoptive families to work with adoption agencies and attorneys who are well-versed with New Hampshire adoption laws, as well as adoption laws throughout the country.

Many adoptive families will ultimately work with a national adoption agency like American Adoptions, so it’s likely that you’ll adopt a child outside of New Hampshire. This is another reason why it’s important that your adoption professional is experienced in the adoption laws in New Hampshire as well as the adoption laws in an expectant mother’s home state.

Call 1-800-ADOPTION or contact us online today to receive free information about New Hampshire adoption with our agency. In the meantime, the following information can help you find out which domestic adoption laws in New Hampshire will impact how you adopt a child.

*Please note that this information is not intended to be used as legal advice. Always consult your adoption attorney for any legal concerns.*

Who Can Adopt in New Hampshire?

The adoption laws in NH state that an adoptive parent can be:

  • A married couple, petitioning to adopt jointly.

  • A married individual, petitioning to adopt solely as long as the petitioner is the stepparent, they’re legally separated from their spouse, the spouse assents to the adoption and the adoptee is over 18, or the court excuses the spouse due to absence, unavailability or unreasonably withholding their assent.

  • An unmarried adult.

  • An unmarried parent of the adoptee.

You should note that while all prospective adoptive parents will need to meet the legal requirements of NH adoption laws, each individual adoption professional may have their own preferences regarding adoptive parents. For example, while there is no minimum age to adopt stated in NH adoption laws, most adoption professionals require that you be at least 21 years old.

However, no matter what type of adoption or agency that you choose, every adoptive family in New Hampshire will first need to be cleared to adopt through a New-Hampshire-licensed home study professional. The home study process involves home visits, family interviews, background checks, training courses and more.

Who Can Be Adopted in New Hampshire?

NH adoption laws state that “any individual may be adopted.”

If that individual is 14 years old or older, they’ll need to offer their consent to the adoption in New Hampshire, provided they’re physically and mentally able to do so.

If that individual is a minor, their biological parents will need to terminate their legal parental rights in order for that child to become legally eligible for adoption in New Hampshire. The biological parents will need to do this in accordance with New Hampshire adoption consent laws and procedures.

New Hampshire Adoption Laws about Advertising

Licensed child-placing agencies in New Hampshire may publish adoption advertisements. There are no laws regarding the use of adoption facilitators in New Hampshire.

If you’re not sure of how NH adoption laws regulate how and where you can search for adoption opportunities, you should always check with a licensed adoption attorney to ensure that you’re abiding by the law.

New Hampshire Adoption Laws about Birth Parent Expenses

The adoption laws in New Hampshire determine how much and what type of expenses may be distributed to prospective birth parents. NH allowable prospective birth parent expenses include:

  • Counseling, medical, adoption administrative and legal fees.

  • Transportation, lodging, clothing and food costs incurred for the placement of the minor.

  • Living expenses for the prospective birth mother when she’s unable to maintain her regular source of income as a result of her pregnancy and delivery.

A court will review any requested prospective birth parent expenses to ensure that they’re considered “reasonable.”

American Adoptions provides adoptive families with a unique Risk Sharing Program that financially protects you in case an adoption disrupts so that you would be reimbursed for any expenses lost in that situation. Call 1-800-ADOPTION  or fill out our free online contact form to learn more about this program or any other services that our agency provides when you adopt in New Hampshire.

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.

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