A Family Law Attorney Can Provide Legal Guidance Through the Adoption Process
You can choose public or private adoption
At the Law Office of Gordon B. Fine, we help families in Westchester, Dutchess and Putnam Counties, including the towns of Yorktown Heights, Peekskill, Carmel, White Plains and the surrounding communities, grow their families through adoption. You have a choice of contacting either a public or private adoption agency among more than 130 agencies in New York State.
Adopting through a public agency means working with a county social services agency. Children here are usually from foster homes. You may also decide to adopt a child in your foster care. Adopting through a private agency means the birth parents gave up their rights to the child in writing, usually at birth.
If your goal is to adopt a child from another country, we help you find reputable agencies specializing in international adoption. We can also discuss independent placement if appropriate.
The adoption process can be challenging and intense — but worth it
The adoption process is quite complex. You should consult with an experienced attorney to guide you through the process and make sure that the proper and required forms are submitted to the court. We can help you through this process from the initial petition through completion of the adoption in court.
Once you choose an agency, you need to go through the following steps:
- Submit an application to adopt in New York — To find a child who best suits your needs, you will need to provide information on your background, family makeup, the number of people in your home, and a description of the child you’d like to adopt.
- Complete the home study — This is a series of meetings, interviews and training sessions between you and the agency. It usually occurs within four months of filing your application. The home study allows both you and the agency to determine whether you want to proceed. After the study is completed, the case worker submits a written summary about your family to be used for placement purposes.
- Attend agency-sponsored training — Training sessions are designed to help you understand the strengths you bring to adoption and to ensure you understand adoption.
- Work with your case worker to find the right child for you — Some agencies provide photo listings you can review, and you may also be able to be included in the family adoption registry, so you can be found.
- Visit with the child — Before an agency places a child with you, you can visit with the child to get to know each other better. These visits may start as short meetings and can get longer as you become more familiar with each other.
- Complete three months of supervision — Even after a child is placed in your home, it doesn’t mean the adoption is finalized. The agency supervises you for three months before the adoption becomes legal.
- Complete the adoption in court — Your attorney files a petition in court and when the adoption is finalized, you agree to assume full legal responsibility for the child’s care.
Get the legal help you need to add to your family through adoption
The Law Office of Gordon B. Fine, located in Yorktown Heights, helps families realize their dreams of adding children to their homes through public, private or independent adoption. Call 914-245-6250 or contact us online to schedule a free initial consultation.