Placing a Baby for Adoption in Texas
If you are pregnant and struggling with your pregnancy options, Lifetime is here for you. The emotions can be overwhelming, and figuring out your next step can be hard. In addition, when you share your news, you may get a wide range of advice and opinions. This can make you feel even more confused.
Step back for a minute and contact Lifetime Adoption. You will find a non-judgmental and calm voice who can help you consider your options. Start by calling, texting, or filling out our online form. A Lifetime Adoption coordinator will contact you immediately. She will even put you in touch with a peer or professional counselor who can help you work through the pros and cons of your options.
What is the Adoption Process in Texas?
For over 35 years, Lifetime Adoption coordinators have been guiding expectant mothers in Texas through the adoption process. First, call, text, or fill out our online form. An adoption coordinator will speak with you to find out what your wishes are and what resources and support you may need.
Next, you can look through adoptive family profiles and choose a family that has the values and lifestyle you would like for your baby. You may want a family from Texas or maybe from another state. The amount of contact you would like with that family during your pregnancy and after is up to you.
Adoption for Older Children
If you are struggling to parent a toddler or older child, adoption can be an option for you as well. In this case, a professional counselor will help create a plan to make a healthy transition that will work for you, your child, and for the adoptive family. She will work with the adoptive parents and your coordinator to create a post-adoption contact agreement that works for everyone and, most importantly, is good for the child.
If you are pregnant, your adoption coordinator will work with you to create a hospital plan. Included in this plan are, who you would like in the delivery room, who you would like to cut the cord, who will hold the baby, whether you will leave the hospital before or after your baby, and other details. You will have an attorney or adoption social worker, at no cost to you, who will make sure that you understand all your rights and will take care of all the paperwork and court filings.
No matter what your situation, our coordinators will help you through the entire adoption process in Texas.
Open Adoption in Texas
- Would you like to choose the adoptive parents or have a coordinator choose for you?
- What type of contact would you like with the family after the adoption is final?
- How would you like your hospital stay to go when you deliver the baby at the hospital?
- Would you like the adoptive parents to go to doctor’s appointments with you?
- Do you need help with pregnancy-related expenses?
If you don’t feel parenting your child is the right thing for you and your baby, placing your child for adoption is a loving and brave choice. There is a loving family that is ready and excited to grow their family through adoption. Now, with open adoption, that does not have to mean saying goodbye to your child forever. You can receive updates, pictures, and even visits. Many of our birth mothers have great relationships with the adoptive families. Recently, one of our birth mothers was getting married, and she asked for her daughter to be there. Not only was her daughter there, but the adoptive parents were there, and the adoptive father actually walked her down the aisle.
Help With Pregnancy Expenses and More
- Fees paid to an attorney, social worker, mental health professional, or physician for services rendered in the usual course of legal or medical practice or in providing adoption counseling
- Reimbursement of legal or medical expenses incurred by a person for the benefit of the child
- Necessary pregnancy-related expenses paid by a child-placing agency for the benefit of the child’s parent during the pregnancy or after the birth of the child as permitted by the minimum standards for child-placing agencies and Department of Protective and Regulatory Services rules
Referrals to professional and peer counseling is available through Lifetime Adoption at no cost to you. A professional counselor is available to help you with the emotions and decision-making processes you will go through during your adoption journey. Peer counselors, who are birth mothers and who have been through the adoption process, are also available. These women are happy to share their stories and help you through the adoption process.
Pregnancy Options in Texas
Many states are now restricting abortion, which means some women need to consider abortion alternatives, such as modern adoption. Modern adoption allows the woman to choose the family who will adopt her child, decide what type of contact to have in the future, and how things will go at the hospital. A pregnant woman may be able to receive some help for pregnancy-related expenses such as food, rent, travel expenses, and more if she is choosing adoption. She can also still get updates, photos, and even visits if she wants. Adoption can be a positive choice for a woman with an unexpected, unwanted, or unplanned pregnancy. Not many people know a lot about modern adoption, so you will find many who may only see it as an alternative to abortion, but the truth is that women from all different walks of life are choosing adoption right now in Texas for their baby.
Texas Adoptive Families
No matter what you’re looking for in an adoptive family, you deserve to find the perfect one. Lifetime Adoption lets you search adoptive families from across the country. We provide more adoptive family choices for you, giving you a greater chance of finding the right fit for your child. When you browse our family profiles, you can learn more about their:
- Reasons for adopting
- Home and neighborhood
- Values and religious beliefs
- And much more!
Families Wanting to Adopt in Texas
If you are considering adopting a newborn, toddler, or child up to the age of 6 in Texas, contact Lifetime Adoption. Maybe you are wondering about adoption laws in Texas, we can help. As a leader in modern, open adoption, we have the experience to make your adoption dreams come true. Our very caring adoption coordinators have been matching birth mothers with hopeful adoptive parents for over three decades. Lifetime Adoption is dedicated to caring for our birth mothers. We make sure they have all the resources they need and work hard to create strong and happy matches between adoptive families and birth families.
Starting the Adoption Process in Texas
To start the adoption process, just fill out our short online application. Applying is free and will not obligate you in any way. When your application has been reviewed, and you are pre-approved, a Lifetime Adoption coordinator will contact you and explain the entire Texas adoption process. In addition, we’ll create a profile for birth mothers to view, help you set up your home study, and you will be given access to the education, blogs, and resources on our membership site.
The founder of Lifetime Adoption, Mardie Caldwell, developed the Lifetime Adoption process after navigating the adoption of her son. For over 30 years, the Lifetime program has been successfully matching birth families and adoptive families. Our kind and experienced coordinators will guide you through the program so that you have a successful adoption journey.
Cost of Adoption in Texas
For example, every adopting family must complete a home study. The average cost is $2,000 to $4,000 and the provider sets the cost. A Texas home study costs will include background checks, required adoption education, and the social worker’s travel/mileage expenses for the trips she makes to your home.
In Texas, most families hire an adoption agency to guide them on their adoption journey. An adoption agency will help hopeful adoptive parents find potential adoption opportunities. Part of that assistance includes screening incoming opportunities to protect adoptive couples from scams. Your adoption agency will also provide pregnancy support and counseling to birth parents as well as information and support to you. Average costs to employ an adoption agency are generally about $25,000 to $50,000.
An additional cost will be legal services once you are matched with an expectant mother or a child. You will need to have legal representation for yourselves as well as for the birth parents. Expect these costs to range from around $8,000 to $15,000. This number could be higher depending on many factors, such as state requirements or certain legal requirements unique to your adoption.
In some situations, a birth mother may need help with pregnancy-related expenses. These pregnancy-related expenses include assistance for items like medical co-pays, utility bills, maternity clothing, groceries, and transportation to and from their doctor’s office for prenatal visits. On average, at Lifetime Adoption, birth mothers in need of financial expenses generally receive around $5,000. Your attorney and agency will work with you to determine what is allowed and how the expenses are paid. It is important to have a budget for these potential expenses in mind. The average cost of adoption in Texas is generally about $38,000 to $70,000.
If these costs do not fit your budget, the foster system or AdoptUSKids is a lower-cost option. Many children are waiting to be adopted in the foster system; in these cases, the state covers the adoption costs. Additionally, kids in need of families in the foster system are typically older (over eight years old) or may have special needs. Adoptive families are required to participate in parenting education that focuses on what to expect when adopting an older child or child with special needs. If you are hoping to adopt a newborn, toddler, or child under five years old, this can be difficult to find through the foster care system.
An additional option is international (or inter-country) adoption. Consult with an adoption agency specializing in international adoption and licensed in your chosen country. You will want to research what countries currently allow international adoption and their rules. As is the case of foster adoption, this is generally not an option if you are hoping to adopt a newborn baby. There are several risks involved in international adoption, such as a country changing its adoption laws or closing prior to the completion of our adoption. This was the case for many families hoping to adopt from Haiti and Ukraine. When this happens, your adoption may end up in limbo for months or years, and the adoption fees you paid may not be refunded. The cost for domestic and international adoption is about the same.
Adoption Laws in Texas
Typically, during the adoption process in Texas, the timeline for legal documentation and the timeline for adoption are as follows.
In general, the birth mother signs papers surrendering 48 hours after delivery of the baby. A birth father may surrender his parental rights by signing an Affidavit of Relinquishment of Parental Rights at any time, before or after the child’s birth. The adoptive parents can finalize their adoption after completing their after placement social worker visits and attending the finalization hearing at the courthouse.
Every adoption is unique, and so rules can vary. There are exceptions and different legal requirements depending on the individual facts of each adoption. Your adoption attorney is there to make sure your adoption goes smoothly, and all legal aspects are done correctly.
Texas Home Studies
A home study includes the following:
- Background checks
- Financial verification
- Medical reports
- Employment verification
- Visit of the home
Part of your home study will be a home visit. This will involve interviewing every member of the household. You will provide background information and information regarding your family and marital relationships, what your parenting style is, why you want to adopt, your education, and more for your home study social worker.
Your Texas home study social worker will come back within one week for the first post-placement visit once your child is placed with you. These visits will continue monthly until your adoption finalization.
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