Can you give a child up for adoption at any age?
No — not any age. But, there are some circumstances where you can place an older child for adoption. That’s what we’re going to talk about in this guide.
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Explaining Age Requirements for “Giving Your Child Up” for Adoption
If you’re considering adoption, then you may feel that it’s a bit complicated, as it doesn’t always occur on a neat timeline. There are many reasons you could be wondering about the age requirements for “giving your child up” for adoption.
No matter what your situation may be, it’s completely okay to wonder, “Can you give your child up for adoption at any age?”
You may feel overwhelmed if this describes your circumstances. But, there is hope. It is completely normal to wonder if there is an age limit to put a child up for adoption, and there are adoption agencies that can support you.
Whether it’s possible to place your child for adoption depends largely on your particular situation. In some instances, you may be able to place an older child for adoption. In others, though, there could be a maximum age to put a child up for adoption.
When you choose adoption, you don’t “give up.” You give your child a life full of love and opportunity.
In the guide below, we will outline some potential scenarios for you to answer as many questions as possible about the age requirements for “giving your child up” for adoption. We should mention that the following situations are not universal, because every situation is unique. If adoption is not an option in your situation, then there are many other resources that can make your life better.
Is It Possible to “Give a Child up” for Adoption at Any Age?
Different adoption professionals have different age requirements, such as a maximum age, when it comes to placing your child for adoption with them. As a result, your child’s age does matter in this instance. For more information on what your options are based on your child’s age, we’ve outlined some of the basics below.
For Children Between Ages 1 and 4:
If your child is still a baby or a toddler, then adoption is absolutely available for you. Most adoption professionals specialize in domestic infant adoption, and many hopeful adoptive parents would love to adopt a child in this age range.
But, by age 4, a child develops quite a bit. As they grow older, children begin to form attachments, so adoption can become more difficult for a child to understand and process. Many adoption agencies can help place a child for adoption until age 4, though it’s crucial to research some resources that may help make parenting easier for you. It’s still possible that parenting could be the best option for your child.
For Children 5 or Older:
Many adoption professionals set age 4 as the maximum age to put a child up for adoption if you want to use their services. But, it’s still possible that local social services may be able to help you. Because of this, it’s always recommended to speak with a social worker about your particular circumstances so that you know what options are available to you.
For children age 5 or older, it could be beneficial for them to help you search for resources that could help you parent. This may be a better alternative than trying to find an adoption professional that will place children for adoption after age 5. There are several services available to you that can help you provide a better life for your child. Below are a few of your options:
For Children Who are Part of a Sibling Set:
If you have a child that is above the maximum age limit, but you’re also planning on placing their younger siblings for adoption, then this could change things. Whenever possible, both adoption agencies and public resources try to keep sibling groups together because research shows that it’s beneficial for children.
When you reach out to an adoption professional about placing more than one child for adoption, be sure to mention how important it is to you that your children stay together. Most adoption agencies won’t split up a sibling group, so they could help you place an older child for adoption even if they exceed the age limit to put a child up for adoption. Even if they usually have a maximum age limit, most adoption professionals make exceptions for sibling groups.
Resources If Your Child Is above the Oldest Age to Give Child up for Adoption
Even if your child is above the maximum age to put a child up for adoption, there are still plenty of resources at your disposal. You are not alone, so please do not hesitate to reach out to any of the following:
- Woman, Infants and Children (WIC)
- Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
- National Mentoring Resource Center
- Adolescent Health
- Head Start
- Social Services
- Special Needs Alliance
If you are thinking about adoption for your child who is between 1 and 4 years old, it is still worth contacting an adoption agency to learn more about your options. You can contact an adoption professional at any time. For older children, it is worth contacting social services.
Remember, reaching out to an adoption agency does not mean you must choose adoption. You can reach out to an adoption professional at any time. It’s free and completely confidential.