Five Questions Families Have About Adoption in Michigan
Elation, fear, peace, guilt, worry, fulfillment — there are a whole host of emotions that surround adoption. Overall, the experience will often be a happy one. But still, you might have pressing questions. Before you can focus on peace over panic, you need accurate answers.
The Gucciardo Law Firm has years of experience with family law. We’ve helped many families, just like yours, to navigate the adoption process smoothly.
Below, we’ve provided answers to some of the most common questions we hear.
1. Can Foster Care Lead to Adoption?
You should never enter foster care with the expectation that you will be able to adopt the child placed into your care. In fact, the hope is always for the child to be reunited with his or her family.
With that being said, there are occasions in which foster care may lead to adoption. Parental rights can be forfeited voluntarily or they can be terminated if the courts believe the child is at risk.
Once that happens, the child will be eligible for adoption. In most cases, the foster parent will receive first consideration.
2. Do I Meet the Requirements for Adoption?
To adopt a child in the state of Michigan, you do not have to be married, own a home, or have lots of money. The primary goal is for the child to have a safe and loving home.
With this in mind, you must be able to:
- Prove that you are at least 18 years old
- Successfully complete a licensing application
- Provide three references
- Pass a background check
- Pass onsite visits from a licensed state employee
- Attend the recommended training
If you are married or live with another adult, they may be subject to all of the same requirements.
3. What Are the Other Types of Adoption?
In addition to foster care adoptions, there are other avenues you might pursue. Those include direct adoptions, international adoptions, and stepparent adoptions.
4. How Much Does Adoption Cost?
Adopting a child in Michigan will require filing and birth certificate fees. In total, that amounts to around $200.
Of course, costs may vary, especially when you are not adopting through foster care. International adoptions tend to be the most expensive option. In all, an international adoption can cost between $20,000 and $40,000.
5. Do I Need a Lawyer for an Upcoming Adoption?
Adoptions are sometimes complicated. Some of the possible legal issues include:
- Parental rights and lack of consent
- The question of open vs. closed adoptions
- The rights of the putative father
As such, it’s generally a good idea to obtain counsel when you are pursuing adoption. An experienced law firm will be able to provide guidance from the very beginning stages of the process.
If you need help finding an adoption agency and filing paperwork, a family lawyer can help.
Have Questions About Adoption in Michigan?
Thinking about adopting? Get in touch with our experienced family law attorneys. At Gucciardo Family Law, we offer free 30-minute consultations for new clients. Reach out to speak with a skilled legal professional today.
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