How to Adopt a Child
The requirements for child adoptions in this state are designed to ensure that the best interests of the child are served and that both the child and prospective adoptive parents are a good fit. The Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) sets the requirements for adoption and manages the process. A Bryan adoption attorney can help you through the rigorous process.
Preliminary Steps in the Adoption Process
Even if you are not entirely convinced that adoption is right for you, you can contact DFPS, and they will send you a list of accredited adoption agencies. One of these agencies can provide you with information about what you should expect, and what is required in order to adopt. Adoption is for life, and it is very important that you are entirely sure that you are suited to accepting a child into your family. Indeed, it is far more than an emotional decision. You need to determine whether you can meet the financial and emotional needs of the child. Keep in mind that an adoptive child may have come from a home that was less than ideal, and may need a great deal of reassurance and care.
You begin the actual process of adoption by attending an orientation meeting. This is required of all prospective adopting parents, and can give you additional information before you decide for sure that adoption is right for you. This orientation is informational in nature, but can be very beneficial.
Starting the Process
Once you have attended the orientation and believe you qualify for adopting under DFPS regulations, you then file a formal application. Approval of your application is a certification, and as such, involves a number of steps. You will need to provide certain documents, and participate in a home study. The home study involves a caseworker visiting your residence to determine if both the living environment is sufficient for bringing a child into it and evaluating you personally.
Finding the Right Child
Once you are certified, DFPS will match you with a potential child. Child Protective Services will introduce you and your home to the child if you find the selection appropriate. This will involve a number of meetings and visits, after which the child will be placed in your home. Six months after the child is placed with you it is time to file the legal documents which will formalize the adoption.