The Complete Guide to Domestic Infant Adoption in MO
Are you considering adoption as a way to grow your family? There’s a lot to learn about this life-changing process.
Adopting an infant in Missouri
can be an amazing way to start or grow your family. When you’re approaching this process, there are some important things to know about how it works and the type of professionals
that can help. Our goal is to support hopeful adoptive parents in their journey, which is why we’ve created this guide to adopting a baby in Missouri.
Here, we’ll cover the most important steps of how to adopt a baby in Missouri, and give you the information you need to know whether or not domestic adoption in Missouri
is right for you.
Ready to take the next steps in your journey toward adopting a baby in Missouri?
First: Discover if Domestic Adoption in Missouri Is Right for You
There are several types of adoption
, and the one you choose will determine the rest of your life. It’s a big decision. How can you know if adopting a baby in Missouri is right for you?
First, consider the three primary types of adoption. Along with domestic adoption in Missouri, there’s also foster care
and international adoption
. It’s worth your time to research each type and consider the pros and cons.
When considering adopting a baby in Missouri, ask yourself:
- When I think of my adoption, do I dream of adopting a newborn?
- Will I be more comfortable working with a private agency than the state system?
- Do I understand, and look forward to, the benefits of an open or semi-open adoption?
- Have I prepared myself to fulfill the responsibilities of parenting?
- Do I truly believe that family is more than biology — that family is love?
Do you find yourself responding, “Yes,” to most of these questions? That could be a sign that adopting an infant in Missouri is the right path for your family.
How to Adopt a Baby in Missouri
Once you decide that domestic adoption in Missouri is right, you’re ready to begin the process
. Everyone will have a unique experience with the adoption journey. However, there are several big steps that are a required part of any process. When considering domestic adoption, it helps to understand what’s required.
This is how to adopt a baby in Missouri:
Step 1: Search for Private Adoption Agencies in Missouri
When you pursue domestic adoption in Missouri, you’ll work with an adoption agency. Agencies provide important services
throughout the process and help ensure the legality of your placement. Choosing the right agency (which will be discussed in greater detail below) is one of the most important steps you can take as you begin your process.
Step 2: Become an Active Waiting Family
Things will pick up once you begin working with an agency. You’ll create your adoption plan, and also complete important steps like the home study
and creating your adoptive family profile
. Once these things are finished, you’ll be ready to become an “active” waiting family, which means your family profile will be shown to prospective birth mothers.
Step 3: Wait for an Adoption Opportunity
This might be the most challenging step of the Missouri adoption process. All you have to do is wait while your profile is being shown to prospective birth mothers, but the wait can be grueling. Wait times will vary
— from weeks to months, depending on the agency you work with and a variety of other factors.
Step 4: Accept an Adoption Opportunity
Your adoption professional will give you the call you’ve been waiting for when a prospective birth mother chooses your profile. At this point, you can choose to accept the opportunity and move toward placement. This is a monumental step in your journey to adopting a baby in Missouri!
Step 5: Conduct Pre-Placement Contact
Did you know that most adoptions today are at least semi-open? This means that the process of adopting a baby in Missouri will most likely involve pre-placement contact
between your family and the prospective birth mother. This is an opportunity to build the foundation of an important and lasting relationship.
Step 6: Prepare for Placement
When the time comes, you’ll get another amazing phone call: It’s time to pack up and head to the hospital. Most families in the domestic adoption process in Missouri will meet their newborn baby for the first time shortly following birth. Every placement situation looks a bit different, and yours will go according to the prospective birth mother’s hospital plan
Step 7: Complete Finalization
The last step of the Missouri adoption process is called finalization
. This takes place about six months after placement. Most finalization hearings take place at a local county courthouse, but some may happen virtually. You’ll prepare to finalize your adoption with the help of your finalizing attorney and adoption professional.
Domestic Adoption Agencies in Missouri
Finding the right newborn adoption agency in Missouri
can make or break your experience with the whole process. Professional assistance from an agency is the best way to navigate the complexities of adoption.
When searching for private adoption agencies in Missouri, there are a few things you should look for:
- Experience: How many placements does the agency take part in each year? Are these numbers consistent year over year? How big is the staff, and what kind of combined experience do they bring to the table? These are all great questions to ask a potential agency. The more experience, the better for you when you’re adopting a baby in Missouri.
- Transparency: Nobody likes to talk about finances, especially when it comes to adoption. But the costs associated with your adoption are too important, and any private adoption agencies in Missouri that you are considering should be honest about their fees. Some agencies may try to sell you on a cost that seems too good to be true, only to spring hidden fees on you late in the process.
- Licensing: Every agency providing services for domestic adoption in Missouri should be fully licensed. This means the agency is held to high ethical and legal standards and subject to regular reviews from objective third parties. Working with a fully licensed agency is the best way to protect your process from disruption.
The best approach to finding an agency when you’re adopting a baby in Missouri is to call several and choose the one that meets your requirements. Ask a lot of questions, and pay attention to how you feel. If one of the private adoption agencies in Missouri makes you feel safe and confident, then that might be the one for you.
There are several infant adoption agencies in Missouri that you can choose from:
Connect with a Professional Today
Feeling a bit overwhelmed? There’s a lot to learn about adopting a baby in Missouri. If you have a sense that infant adoption could be the right thing for your family, it might be helpful to speak with a professional. You can contact us today
to be connected with a helpful adoption specialist, or learn more by reading the rest of our in-depth guides to the Missouri adoption process.