Since 2005 I have provided home study and post placement services for domestic and international adoptions; including LGBTQ adoptions, single parent adoptions, grandparent and family adoptions, foster to adopt, stepparent adoptions, open, semi-open, and closed adoptions.
A home study (sometimes called a pre-placement report) is required for nearly every adoption, and is an important part of the adoption process. A home study consists of a tour of your home, and an interview and written report of you, your partner, and anyone else who lives in your home. The home study process is completed prior to the placement of an adopted child. The home study will address topics such as your childhood and family upbringing, your career, your current family, your marriage or relationship (if applicable), and why you are pursuing adoption.
I approach the home study interview as a conversation, rather than an interrogation. I will provide you with education regarding adoption, the adoption process, and issues that may affect adopted children. I will also provide you with some resources to help you during your adoption journey, and recommend additional adoption training to help you better prepare to become an adoptive parent. Training is required for all international adoptions, and also typically when adopting from foster care.
A home study update is required if information provided in the original home study has expired prior to the finalization of the adoption, such as background clearances, medical physicals, and financial information. Typically, such information expires after one year for domestic adoptions, and 14 months for international adoptions.
An update is also required when there are major changes in the family including a geographical move, the birth of a child, a major medical diagnosis, separation, divorce, or death.
At least one post-placement report is necessary for all adoptions. Post-placement visits/reports are completed after the adopted child is in your home. The intervals at which the post-placement visits are conducted, and the number of post-placement visits/reports required, depend on the state and country from which the child is adopted, or where the adoption is finalizing. If you are using an adoption agency for the placement of your child, post-placement visits may also vary depending on the requirements of your placing agency. For domestic adoptions, typically between one and three post-placements are required and are completed within the first year of the child being placed in your care. For international adoptions, post-placement reports are required at more frequent intervals, and for a longer period of time.
Stepparent and Second-Parent adoptions typically utilize the post-placement requirements (instead of home study requirements) to complete an adoption, since the child is already in the home. However, several pieces of information needed for the home study process are still required for these adoptions.
Several pieces of information are needed from you in order to complete the home study. For example, each prospective adoptive parent will need to complete an autobiography, a current medical physical, criminal and child abuse background checks, reference letters, financial statement, and copies of legal documents such as divorce decrees, and birth and marriage certificates.
I will provide you with a comprehensive list of what all is needed for your specific adoption, as well as the forms you’ll need to complete for the home study.