How do I begin the process of adopting an older child?

Once prospective parents decide to adopt an older child from another country or domestically they should begin contacting prospective agencies. Prospective parents should ask agencies about their parent eligibility requirements, the matching process, and their post-placement services. Families adopting domestically must choose a public or private agency. Even if parents work with a private agency they will interact at some point with the public agency in care of the child. While choosing an agency, prospective parents should also begin speaking with other adoptive parents, joining adoptive parent support groups, and reading books and articles about child trauma. Once parents choose an agency they will have to complete a general application form and other paperwork including a budget worksheet, self-study, family information form, and criminal background check form.

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