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Adoption: Frequently Asked Questions

If you are considering adoption, you probably have a lot of questions.  To further assist you, we’ve compiled a list of the most commonly asked questions we receive. If you still have questions after reading our FAQs, feel free contact us at (203) 855-8765 or via email at adoption@fcagency.org.

Click on the link below to read some of the most frequently asked questions:

What is the Adoption Program at Family & Children’s Agency?

The Adoption program at Family & Children’s Agency, provides pre-adoption counseling, home studies, and placement of children born in the U.S. and abroad. We also provide post-placement assistance and ongoing services to adoptive families. Fees are based on the services utilized on a pay-as-you-go basis. The Adoption program has offices in Norwalk, Hartford, and Larchmont, NY.

What Options Are There for Adoptive Parents Working with Family & Children’s Agency?

Once you have your home study, you can adopt in the United States or overseas. Family & Children’s Agency places infants born in the United States through our Domestic program. Many young women seek us out or are referred to us for possible adoptive placement. In “Parent Initiated” Adoption, the adoptive parents locate a potential birth mother and infant through advertising and networking. Family & Children’s Agency also works with the Department of Children and Families (DCF) in Connecticut to help find adoptive families for children in foster care. We have placement programs for children from Korea and China. Family & Children’s Agency can prepare home studies for adoption through other agencies. We are also highly experienced in placing children with special needs such as physical conditions amenable to treatment.

Is There a Waiting List for Domestic adoptions?

No. Selections are not made from a chronological waiting list. Home studies begin within two weeks of application and become active as soon as they are completed. The birth parents, not the Family & Children’s Agency, selects the family to adopt their baby by reviewing the profile of waiting families. There are usually about 8-10 couples in the Family & Children’s Agency Domestic program at any one time. Most families seeking United States placements have a placement within two years, and often much sooner. We assist you in preparing an appropriate profile to tell the birth parents about yourselves.

Is there a long wait for International Adoptions?

The waiting time for an international adoption varies by program and is subject to change.  Please visit the web pages for our international programs for specific information on waiting times.

How old are the children that are adopted through Family & Children’s Agency?

In doing a “Parent Initiated” Adoption, you will be locating a birth mother and adopting a newborn. If a birthmother chooses you through our Domestic program, the child will be a newborn. Our international programs have children of both sexes. Infant boys and girls adopted through the Korea program are typically 18-20 months of age at the time of placement. China places mostly girls, generally from 6 to 12 months, although older children are available, as well as special needs children.

What is Family & Children’s Agency’s experience in adoption?

Family & Children’s Agency is one of the largest agencies in Connecticut. We have been doing international and domestic adoptions for many years. Members of our staff were instrumental in framing the Connecticut Identified Adoption Laws and have served on the Executive Board of the Connecticut Council on Adoption. Family & Children’s Agency has many contacts throughout the United States to assist us in interstate adoptions. We have placed nearly 2,000 children from Korea since the program began in 1982. We have developed specialized programs for adoption in China with our own translators and bi-lingual coordinators who are in frequent contact with the foreign officials.

How much does adoption cost?

The home study cost is $1,950. All other costs vary according not only to the adoption program you choose, but also the auxiliary costs. When budgeting for adoption, it’s important to be aware of related expenses, such as immigration documents, travel, medical evaluations, translations, long distance calls, possible attorney fees, and perhaps living expenses while at your out-of-state or foreign destination. The placement fee is paid to the U.S. adoption agency that places the child with you. This may be Family & Children’s Agency or an out-of-state agency, but never both. If you reside outside Connecticut or New York your home study fee will be set by your local adoption agency.

Are there age limits?

Most foreign countries have age restrictions. Family & Children’s Agency accepts application for parents between the ages of 25-65 for adoption in the United States. Applicants adopting domestically should keep in mind that the birth parents’ preferences may vary regarding age.

What are “Closed” and “Open” Adoptions?

A “closed” adoption is one that has no direct contact or exchange of information between the birth parents and the adoptive family.

An “open” adoption is one where the names and identifying information of birth parents and adoptive families are disclosed to the other and there is direct contact between the two parties that generally continues after the birth and placement. The terms of the relationship are determined by the participants.

Seldom is an adoption either fully “open” or fully “closed”; most fall somewhere between the two. Some involve limited contact, either in person or by phone, exchange of photographs following placement, etc. There is no “right” adoption plan that meets the needs of all birth parents and adoptive families. The goal of Family & Children’s Agency is to create the plan that works best for all parties involved in each adoption. We encourage both birth parents and adoptive parents to be active participants in the process.

Does Family & Children’s Agency have a policy requiring “Open” or “Closed” adoption?

Not necessarily. The adoptive parents and the birth parents decide mutually on the amount of contact they want to have. Some relationships are quite open, and others have little or no contact. Generally we encourage and support one meeting, usually in our office, but it is not mandatory. Family & Children’s Agency can coordinate the adoption planning with a local agency in the birth parents’ state if they do not reside in Connecticut or New York.

I do not reside in New York or Connecticut. How do Family & Children’s Agency and my local agency work together to obtain a child for me?

A local adoption agency will prepare your home study according to the laws of your state. Your Family & Children’s Agency social worker will be in frequent contact with you regarding other documents that are required for the Family & Children’s Agency program you choose to adopt from. Family & Children’s Agency will secure a referral for you and forward it to you and your agency.

What is the first step?

The first step is to begin a home study. All prospective adoptive parents must have an approved home study. A home study is a supportive and educational process composed of individual and group sessions with the social worker who is helping you with your adoption. Most home studies are completed in six to eight weeks and consist of at least one appointment at the agency and one in your home.

If you reside outside Connecticut or New York, the home study must be completed by an adoption agency licensed in the state in which you have residence.

When I accept a child’s referral, how do we proceed?

Family & Children’s Agency will notify the adoption authority of the country that you accept the child’s referral and we will then help you to coordinate the travel plans.

I understand most countries want post-adoption updates on the child for at least a year. I reside outside of Connecticut/New York. How do I obtain them?

If you reside out of Connecticut/New York, your home study agency will arrange to visit you and will send the child’s post adoption information to Family & Children’s Agency. We will forward it to the country you adopted from.

What is Family & Children’s Agency’s philosophy of adoption?

Family & Children’s Agency believes in a caring approach that is concerned with the needs of all parties involved. Our social workers work in a team effort to balance and protect the rights of all the parties involved. We view adoption as a lifelong process that deserves the adoption agency’s and the parent’s commitment to the common goal of doing what is best for everyone.

Click here for Birth Mother FAQs.

For more information

Call us collect at:
(203) 855-8765 (Norwalk)
(860) 586-2365 (Hartford)

Call us toll-free at:
(800) 676-4066 (Norwalk)
(866) 858-3137 (Hartford)

adoption@fcagency.org