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intER-state, intRA-family adoption?

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You will want to get the advice of an experienced adoption attorney. Every state has it's own set of adoption laws and they often vary greatly. With a family placement, it's sometimes possible to do guardianship at birth and then follow-up with a homestudy and adoption after baby is home with you. This is a nice option because you are not out the $$ for a homestudy if mom decides to parent when baby is born. Some states do not allow this, however.


The legal stuff depends greatly on the laws of your state (receiving state) and where baby will be born (sending state) and then how those laws play together. Here is a good place to look for an attorney - http://www.adoptionattorneys.org/directory_map.asp


As for the intra-family dynamics ... ugh. It seems that some situations work out beautifully and others turn into a big giant trainwreck. :tongue_smilie:

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We just finished up a two year process involving just this situation. Here's what I learned.


If you think there is ANY possibility that you wil need to step in as a placement, start the foster parent training now, especially if a foster parent license is required for family placement in either state. The ICPC process can take incredibly long, and social workers don't like to do it. Starting training will prove you are committed to the process and might nudge them in your favor.


Notify the social worker NOW that you'd be open to being a placement. Social workers don't look kindly on family that steps up at the last minute. Document that you are involved early on.


Visit if all possible. Establish a relationship with the child.


Really evaluate your relationship with your family. If you take this child, you will have to place the child's needs first, even if it means ticking off your family members. Be honest as to whether or not you're up to the task.


Consult a lawyer in the child's state. Sometimes a 30 minute consultation is all you need to figure out what you must do.


I'm totally unfamiliar with the states you mentioned, but foster-adopting a family member out of state is a long and trying process. It's totally worth it, though.


The bottom line is, if you think you would like to get involved, step up now. If you find you can't do it at a later time, it's easy to drop out of the process. But if the process gets too far along and you don't do anything, you may lose your relative to the system.

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