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Can You Give a Child Up for Adoption in a Different State?

How People From Another State Can Adopt Your Baby

As a woman considering adoption, you want to find the perfect adoptive family for your baby. But what if that family lives in another state?

If this is your situation, you probably have a few thoughts on your mind:

Can you give a child up for adoption in a different state?

Can people from another state adopt my baby?

I want to give my child up for adoption someplace out of state — is that even possible?

The answers to all these questions are yes. With American Adoptions, you are not limited to hopeful parents in your own state or hometown. As a national agency, we work with waiting families across all 50 states to ensure you can find the perfect one for your child — regardless of where they live. You can start searching through these families today by calling 1-800-ADOPTION.

You may be wondering exactly how these interstate adoptions work before, during and after placement. Here, learn more about the process of how you can put a child up for adoption in a different state with the perfect adoptive parents.

How Can People From Another State Adopt My Baby?

For expectant mothers, the adoption process is not much different for interstate adoption placements. Regardless of where you and the prospective adoptive parents live, you will still have an opportunity to make your own adoption plan, determine your preferences for an adoptive family, review waiting families’ profiles and choose the right one for your child.

There are a few steps involved in giving a child up for adoption in a different state:

Step 1: Find adoptive parents.

Many prospective birth mothers who work with American Adoptions end up finding a family from another state during their adoption process. Some plan to place their child in another state to give themselves distance in their adoption relationship, while others simply find a family who meets all of their other preferences and just happens to live out of state.

As you create your adoption plan, your adoption specialist will help you determine what you wish for in adoptive parents for your child. If you tell her, “I want to give my child up for adoption someplace out of state,” she will only present families that meet this requirement. You can even choose which state you want your baby to grow up in.

Your adoption specialist will present profiles of adoptive families to you, and you will decide which ones you want for your child. You can decide that people from another state can adopt your baby — or you can change your mind and select a local family instead. The choice is always up to you!

Step 2: Get to know the family through pre-placement contact.

No matter how much distance may separate you, you will have the opportunity to grow close with the adoptive parents through phone calls, the exchange of email, and more. Your adoption specialist will always mediate the first conversation between the adoptive parents and you, to make sure you are comfortable with the match. From there, you can conduct a direct relationship with the adoptive parents, if you are comfortable doing so.

If you want to meet the family in person, American Adoptions can even arrange for a visit with them in your home town. Many adoptive parents are thrilled at the opportunity to get you know you and where you are from before you give birth, and an in-person meeting can help alleviate some of the unknowns that come from working with a family in a different state.

Step 3: Meet the adoptive family at the hospital.

When your baby is born, the adoptive parents you choose will travel to the hospital for placement. Every adoptive family who works with American Adoptions knows that their baby could be born anywhere, at any time, and they will be willing and ready to travel at a moment’s notice — no matter how far away they may live. If you wish to, you can even communicate with the adoptive parents ahead of time to ensure they are there for your estimated due date.

Step 4: Ensure the adoption is completed safely.

Before the adoptive family can return to their home state with the baby, they will need to go through a paperwork process to satisfy the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children (ICPC). This allows officials in your home state and the family’s home state to review the adoption and ensure your baby is going to a safe home. When you work with American Adoptions, you can be sure that professional adoption specialists will look out for your baby’s safety during every step of this legal process.

During the adoptive family’s ICPC wait, you can spend more time getting to know them and seeing your baby, if you’re comfortable doing so, before they return back to their home state. Many members of out-of-state adoption triads find this an invaluable time to build a strong relationship.

Step 5: Continue your relationship with post-placement contact.

If you choose to have an open adoption, you can stay in touch with your child and the adoptive parents for years to come — whether that family lives close or far from you.

No matter the distance, you have the right to an open adoption that looks the way you want it to, whether it includes photos, emails, texts, phone calls or more. If you want to have future visits with your child, you will be matched with an adoptive family who is willing and able to travel to you for those visits.

Know this: You can “give up” a child for adoption in a different state and still maintain the kind of open adoption relationship you want. American Adoptions will always be here to help.


Whether you already know hopeful parents across state lines or need help searching the country for an adoptive family, American Adoptions can provide the guidance and services you need to safely place your baby with hopeful parents in any state.

If you are thinking, “I need help with adoption for my baby out of state,” please contact an adoption specialist today at 1-800-ADOPTION. Your call is free, confidential, and does not obligate you to proceed with an adoption plan.

Information available through these links is the sole property of the companies and organizations listed therein. America Adoptions, Inc. provides this information as a courtesy and is in no way responsible for its content or accuracy.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Why is American Adoptions the right adoption agency choice for many birth mothers?

American Adoptions is one of the largest licensed adoption agencies in the United States. Each year, we work with thousands of women who are facing an unplanned pregnancy and offer assistance to these women. Our large, caring staff is able to assist you seven days a week and provide you with one-on-one counseling about your pregnancy and available options.

You should choose an adoption agency where you feel completely comfortable with their services and staff. With American Adoptions, you will work with an Adoption Specialist who is on-call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The Adoption Specialist will be your advocate and will provide support and guidance as you create an adoption plan that is right for you.

How will the family tell my child about me and the adoption when my child is older?

Each family has their own style of introducing adoption to the child. When you are matched with an adoptive family, you can ask them this question. If you would like your Adoption Specialist to discuss it for you, just let her know. He or she can share your wishes or provide good ideas from other adoptive families.

You will also be able to share what you want your baby to know about you. You can complete a keepsake booklet to share hobbies, stories, photos of you and your family and a letter to your baby. The adoptive family can provide this to your child as he or she grows older. Be as creative as you like! Some birth mothers have even knitted a special blanket as a gift to their baby or given a similar symbol of their love.

The father of your baby can fill out the birth father's keepsake booklet or write a letter too. You may have other family members who would also like to share photos or a letter to the baby. This is your opportunity to pass on your and your family's love and to share your personality, history and reasons for choosing adoption. The adoptive family will treasure whatever information you provide and will share it with the baby at an appropriate age. In most adoptive homes, the word adoption is in the child's vocabulary early on, and adoption is celebrated in their lives.

Additional Resources

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