November is National Adoption Awareness Month!
For clients seeking to adopt, I provide counsel and represent you through the finalization of your parental placement or agency adoption. I can provide assistance in interstate (ICPC) adoptions, step-parent adoptions, single parent adoptions, same sex adoptions, relative adoptions, and adult adoptions.
In the Commonwealth of Virginia, two types of adoptive placements are legally recognized: agency placements and non-agency placements.
An agency adoptive placement occurs when the state has granted authority to either the Department of Social Services (public) or a state licensed adoption agency (private) to place the child for adoption. Parental rights have been terminated and the agency agrees to the adoption.
A non-agency adoptive placement occurs when birth parents (or legal guardians) agree to the adoption and have their rights terminated by the entry of the final order of adoption. Types of non-agency placements include step parent adoptions, adult adoptions and parental placement adoptions. In some non-agency placements, a home study is required.
My office can assist prospective adoptive parents in finding the resources they need to conduct a home study if required, and can also help prospective adoptive parents find birth parents that are seeking to place a child for adoption. I am also available to assist birth parents in locating prospective adoptive parents.
Whether you are considering an agency or non-agency placement, the services of an attorney are strongly recommended to petition the Court for a final order of adoption and provide counsel through the entry of that order.