Whether you are an expecting mother considering adoption or a family hoping to adopt, you may be wondering where and how to start the process. If you are in the Raleigh area and looking for information about adoption, the following resources can assist you at every stage.
Adoption Agencies and Professionals in Raleigh
Adoption agencies provide comprehensive adoption services to hopeful families and prospective birth mothers. From the initial planning stages to finalization, an adoption specialist will guide you through every step of the process. If you are ready to pursue adoption or if you simply have questions, contact one of the following national or local Raleigh agencies:
Foster Care Agencies in Raleigh
All foster parents in Raleigh must meet the eligibility requirements issued by the state of North Carolina. Certain foster care agencies may also have additional criteria for families hoping to become foster parents. In North Carolina, if you want to be a foster parent, you must:
- Be at least 21 years old
- Complete a background check
- Complete a home study
- Become licensed by going through required training
For more information, follow the links below to find some of Raleigh’s foster care professionals:
North Carolina Home Study Professionals
The home study is the stage of the adoption process that ensures that a family’s home is suitable for raising a child. All prospective families must undergo a background check, a home inspection, and a series of interviews by a social worker before they are approved. If you are ready to begin the home study process, contact one of the following state-licensed providers:
- Carolina Adoption Services
Carolina Adoption Services, a Greensboro-based agency, is licensed to provide services to families in North and South Carolina.
In North Carolina:
- Christian Adoption Services
Along with providing home studies and other adoption services to prospective families, this agency also has a 24-hour hotline for pregnant women in need of support.
- NC Homestudies
Along with their adoption counseling services, NCHS is licensed to complete home studies for families across North Carolina.
- Nathanson Adoption Services
Nathanson Adoption Services is licensed to provide home studies as well as other pre- and post-adoption services for hopeful families in North Carolina.
Visit 1800HomeStudy.com to learn more about North Carolina home study providers.
Hospitals in Raleigh
As the birth mother’s due date approaches, she will want to begin planning her hospital stay. If you are an expecting mother pursuing an adoption plan, you can work with your hospital and your adoption specialist to decide what kind of labor experience you want and who you want there with you. When you are ready to prepare for your hospital trip, contact one of the following hospitals in the Raleigh area:
- Duke Raleigh Hospital
Wake Forest Road
Raleigh, NC 27609
- WakeMed Health and Hospitals
3000 New Bern Avenue
Raleigh, NC 27610
- Rex Hospital
4420 Lake Boone Trail
Raleigh, NC 27607
North Carolina Adoption Laws
Because each state has slightly different adoption laws, you will want to become familiar with the adoption and foster care requirements of North Carolina before you pursue an adoption in Raleigh. Below is an outline of what prospective birth parents and adoptive families must do to successfully complete an adoption.
In order for an adoption to be legally valid, the birth parents’ rights must be terminated. If you are a prospective birth mother, you will be asked to sign relinquishment papers shortly after giving birth. The father of the child must also terminate his rights, regardless of his involvement in the adoption. If his consent cannot be obtained, there are ways to terminate his rights involuntarily. For more information, consult your adoption attorney or visit the Child Welfare Information Gateway.
All adoptive families must meet the eligibility criteria of their state in order to adopt. While general requirements tend to be the same, each state’s adoption laws are slightly different. In North Carolina, any adult can adopt according to the law. Agencies you work with may have requirements in order to work with them, so be sure to carefully research different adoption professionals before choosing one.
County District Courts
All adoptions must be finalized in court. Finalization usually occurs around six months after placement, following a series of post-placement check-ins from a social worker. After that, adoptive families will be able to legally complete their adoption in a court near them. Here, you can find the information for courts in the counties near Raleigh:
Things to Do in Raleigh
If you are traveling to Raleigh to adopt, you may find yourself in the city for an extended period of time as you wait for placement to occur. While you are in Raleigh, here are just a few places you can visit: