When an individual or couple decides to adopt a child, it can be an emotional and exciting time. Many find themselves conflicted over what type of adoption is best for them and their family. Each family’s needs are unique and there are various adoption methods available to meet those needs under the law. Those looking to adopt a child should seek the guidance of a New York adoption lawyer who can help them find out which adoption type is best for their family and guide them through the adoption process.
In an agency adoption, the placement of the child is made by a private or public adoption agency. These agencies are regulated by New York State and are licensed to place children with an adoptive parent or parents.
Private-placement adoption, also known as independent adoption, involves a direct arrangement between the birth parents and the adoptive parents. These adoptions can be emotional and often complex. Those looking to adopt a child through a private-placement adoption should consult a New York adoption lawyer who can review the documentation and advise them of their rights during the process.
The adoption of a step-child by a step-parent is directed by New York State law. The process is likely to run smoothly if both birth parents consent to the process. However, if one birth parent does not consent to the adoption or cannot be found, it is crucial to consult the guidance of an adoption attorney as the process can be long and complex.
New York residents may choose to adopt a child that is born and residing in a foreign country. International adoption can be very complex as the adoption must satisfy both the laws of New York State as well as the laws of the host country. In addition, adoptive parents must secure an immigrant visa for the child through the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Once approved, the child will be granted citizenship upon entering the country.
Open vs. Closed Adoption
Those looking to adopt will need to make a decision about whether they would like to have a closed or open adoption for their child. A closed adoption will not allow identifying information about the birth parents or the adoptive parent or parents to be shared or contact to be made between the two. When the adoption is closed, the records are usually sealed. However, once the child turns 18 or younger with the consent of adoptive parents, he or she may be able to register for the Adoption Information Registry through the New York State Department of Health. Once registered, the adoptee can submit an application to receive information about their biological parents, their biological parents’ medical records, and biological siblings.
An open adoption is one that allows certain forms of communication between the birth parents, adoptive parent or parents, and the child. This may include, but not limited to, sharing pictures and letters, to having phone calls, to in-person contact.
When deciding to adopt a child there are many factors to consider, including what type of adoption is best for you and your family. It is important that those looking to adopt a child seek the guidance of an experienced New York adoption lawyer who can guide them through the adoption process and advise them of their legal rights during proceedings. Heather A. Fig is an experienced Suffolk County adoption lawyer who is experienced in successfully navigating clients through the adoption process. With a family law office located conveniently located in Bayport, Long Island, New York, Heather A. Fig is available to represent both Nassau County and Suffolk County residents with their family law needs. For more information or to schedule a consultation with our Long Island adoption lawyers, call office.