If you’re pregnant and thinking about placing your baby for adoption, you probably have many questions. Many women considering adoption wonder how the process works, what adoptive parents are like, and how to tell their baby’s father about adoption.
One common question that regularly pops up is whether you can get paid for placing your baby for adoption. While you can’t receive money for choosing adoption or sell your baby, you may be able to get financial assistance when placing your baby for adoption. In addition, Lifetime Adoption provides birth mothers many free services. There are many misunderstandings about adoption “compensation” for birth mothers, like what it means and what it looks like to get financial help for adoption.
Adoption Compensation for Birth Mother
Adoption and money are tricky topics, especially when you put them together. So, do you get paid for the adoption of your baby? In short, the answer is, “No, there is no financial compensation for a birth mother.” There are no adoption agencies that pay birth mothers.
In fact, it’s illegal and unethical to pay for a baby. So if someone offers you money to place your baby for adoption, don’t do it. This is human trafficking, and you could end up facing serious legal charges.
Find a Licensed Adoption Agency
So that you don’t get mixed up in this kind of scam, it’s important to work with a licensed adoption agency like Lifetime Adoption. We have over 35 years of experience in helping birth mothers through the adoption process.
In addition, our adoption professionals are familiar with the many financial needs that birth mothers may face during their pregnancy and after the adoption.
When you contact Lifetime, you’ll be assigned to your own personal adoption coordinator. She will be your point person to walk you through your entire pregnancy and adoption process. She will help you as you create an adoption plan, fill out paperwork, and choose adoptive parents. Our caring adoption coordinators will help you from the moment you first contact us all the way through to making an adoption plan and completing the adoption itself. We are always here for you.
Is there financial assistance available for birth moms?
Adoption agencies provide different types of support and education for birth mothers. They can also help you find online resources, peer counseling, and an adoption attorney if you need one. For instance, Lifetime Adoption provides birth mothers many services, including:
- Counseling, peer and licensed professional counseling
- 24/7 phone and text support
- Maternity clothing
- Access to a nationwide selection of adoptive families
- Help to create an adoption plan
- Goal-setting help
- Medical referrals
- Help with medical resources you need
- Pregnancy-related expenses paid (if it’s allowed by your state’s adoption laws)
- Transportation to your doctor’s office for appointments
Could I be eligible for financial support?
Pregnancy and childbirth costs can be high, even if you have good health insurance. Raising a child to age 17 was recently estimated to be $233,610 for food, shelter, and other necessities. This estimate does not include the price of a college education.
A lack of financial resources is one of the reasons many women consider adoption. If you’re pregnant and it wasn’t planned, then worrying about money can add to an already stressful situation. Pregnancy and childbirth are expensive even if you have good health insurance, and continuing to work as your pregnancy progresses can be difficult. Financial struggles have led some pregnant women to wonder, “Can I get financial assistance if I place my baby for adoption?”
Depending on your situation and the laws of your state, you may be eligible for some type of financial support. The adoption agency doesn’t control how much financial help you can receive. A court will usually need to approve the assistance the adoptive couple provides to a pregnant woman.
For instance, in California, an adoptive family is legally allowed to assist a birth mother with some expenses such as:
- Financial needs related to a pregnancy
- Those paid for the welfare of birth mother and baby
- Medical bills during pregnancy and after delivery (around 4 to 6 weeks)
- Unusual medical circumstances
Who decides how much financial help I can receive?
Your situation and the laws of your state will often determine how much and what type of assistance you can receive. A court will usually need to approve the assistance the adoptive couple provides to a pregnant woman.
Your adoption agency cannot determine or control how much financial assistance you get, since that’s determined by your state’s adoption laws. However, they can help in distributing the financial assistance where you need it: to your landlord, electric company, or cell phone provider, for example. Things that are sometimes covered by this type of financial support include:
- Medical expenses during your pregnancy
- Help to pay your rent
- Utilities for your household
- Doctors’ appointments (this is the most common type of adoption financial assistance that birth mothers receive)
In addition, Lifetime Adoption Foundation provides an education scholarship for birth mothers who qualify for it. As a birth mother, you can apply for this scholarship to continue your education and help with your future career.
It’s common to wonder, “Can I get money for giving my baby up for adoption?” or “Do adoption agencies pay birth mothers for choosing adoption?” The answer to these questions is no because there’s a difference between being paid to “give a baby up” for adoption and getting financial assistance during your pregnancy.
Hopefully, after reading this article, you understand that adoption compensation for birth mothers isn’t allowed. Getting paid for the adoption of your baby is illegal and unethical. It’s human trafficking.
You Are Not Alone – Contact Lifetime Adoption
Facing an unplanned pregnancy can be nerve-wracking, and it takes a lot of love and courage to choose adoption for your baby. Adoption is an unselfish gift you give your baby and hopeful adoptive parents, requiring considerable emotional sacrifices. It shouldn’t also be a financial burden.
You can get adoption assistance, which will help ease the financial challenges of pregnancy so you can have a healthy pregnancy. Plus, you’ll be able to focus on making the best choices for yourself and your baby instead of worrying about money.
If you’ve decided to place your baby for adoption, be sure to find a licensed adoption agency to help you. The adoption agency should have proof of licensure on its website. After finding a reputable agency, they’ll help you not only through the process of finding an adoptive family for your baby, but they will provide some amount of assistance for you. If you are eligible and your state allows it, you may be eligible for financial aid for your lifestyle/ household, or medical expenses.
Most of all, remember you are not alone. Lifetime Adoption has years of experience helping birth mothers. Our staff is available any time, day or night to assist you or to provide information about adoption and the services we provide to and for birth parents.
There are many ways to contact us:
- 24 Hour Talk/Text Adoption Hotline: 1-800-923-6784
- Start an adoption plan now by filling out the informational questionnaire
- Learn more about how the adoption process works and email us with your questions
We’re here for you, with the help you need, when you want it, anytime 24/7.
Editor’s Note: This article was originally published on August 6, 2021, and has since been updated.
As Vice President of Lifetime Adoption, Heather Featherston holds an MBA and is passionate about working with those facing adoption, pregnancy, and parenting issues. Heather has conducted training for birth parent advocates, spoken to professional groups, and has appeared on television and radio to discuss the multiple aspects of adoption. She has provided one-on-one support to women and hopeful adoptive parents working through adoption decisions.
Since 2002, she has been helping pregnant women and others in crisis to learn more about adoption. Heather also trains and speaks nationwide to pregnancy clinics to effectively meet the needs of women who want to explore adoption for their child. Today, she continues to address the concerns women have about adoption and supports the needs of women who choose adoption for their child.
As a published author of the book Called to Adoption, Featherston loves to see God’s hand at work every day as she helps children and families come together through adoption.