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By Adoption Choices of Nevada

Infant Adoption: Agency vs. Independent

By Devon Thornton

If you are in Nevada and are considering adoption as a birth parent or as an adoptive parent, you must be familiar with the various types of adoption options that are available to you. One of those pathways is infant adoption. In the following article, we will go over the different ways infant adoption is achievable and the pros and cons of each option. We understand that the process of adoption is difficult, and we are here to explain the comparisons, pros, and cons between agency and independent adoption

Infant Adoption via an Agency

People who are looking into infant adoption within Nevada are often doing so through the help of an adoption agency. Private adoption agencies are required to adhere to certain procedural standards and must maintain proper licensing. This can provide great reassurance to adoptive and birth parents in the monitoring and oversight of their adoption process.

Private adoption agencies, specifically in Reno, Nevada, have different requirements and standards. Their clients must meet in order to be considered potential adoptive parents. Once approved, the agency will enter the adoptive parents’ profiles into a database that will be kept for birth parents to browse and choose the family that they feel will fit their adoption plan. Once a match is made, the adoption specialist assigned to each case will work alongside both adoptive and birth parents. They will act as an intermediary to help both families work through the adoption process. It can be a daunting task to take on alone, and having a professional to guide you can be a huge benefit. This also allows both parties to maintain the amount of contact that they are most comfortable with during the process and onward.

Benefits of Infant Adoption

Another great benefit of infant adoption through an agency is birth-parent counseling. Agencies usually provide an extensive support system for the birth parents throughout and after the adoption process. Post-adoption counseling is a great help for birth parents. Counseling can make the decision to place a child in adoption a lot less intimidating. Working with an agency comes with a great many resources for both adoptive and birth parents.

  • Agency adoption tends to have better resources for birth and adoptive parents, including necessary counseling
  • Adoption agencies assign families an adoption specialist who will help handle all the work that goes into the adoption process, including legal paperwork which can be confusing and time-consuming
  • Adoption agencies are typically more expensive than adopting directly from a birth parent
  • The adoption process can be significantly longer through an agency because of wait lists

Independent Infant Adoption

An alternate route to infant adoption can be to go through a private adoption attorney. Independent adoption is achieved without the help of an agency. In an independent adoption, families that are looking to adopt will independently search for a potential birth parent and will work with attorneys to work out the terms of the adoption process.

** It is important to note that independent adoption, while legal in nearly all states, is not permitted in some states. Independent adoption regulations vary from state to state due to different adoption laws. Make sure to research your state’s adoption laws. **

With an independent adoption, contact between birth and adoptive parents is completely up to the parties involved. In some cases, adoptive and birth parents remain close throughout the process and this can help to alleviate some of the stress of the adoption process and make it a more satisfying experience. Independent adoptions usually happen more quickly than through an agency because of the lack of waiting lists. Adoptive parents may put out advertisements for birth parents or may have their attorneys find a potential birth mother. Independent adoptions are usually finalized within a year.

Because independent adoptions work without the standards and guarantees of an agency, adoptive parents must be comfortable with some risk. Finding a good adoption attorney is essential in going through this process. There are a number of adoption laws that must be followed. Many of these laws revolve around payments during the adoption process. Most state laws allow adoptive parents to pay medical expenses, legal fees, and counseling fees. Some states will also allow payments for the birth parent’s living expenses during the pregnancy. It is important to research your state’s laws when looking into independent adoption. Independent adoption is typically less expensive than agency adoption but it is dependent on the state and the personal agreement between adoptive and birth parents.

  • Independent adoptions are finalzied more quickly than through an agency.
  • There is more freedom to choose the type of relationship between birth and adoptive parents and more freedom in the adoption process in general.
  • Overall less expensive because of the absence of agency fees.
  • Independent adoptions can be more work because of the lack of adoption specialists, parents must handle everything themselves or with an attorney.
  • There are fewer resources for adoptive and birth parents, specifically post-adoption counseling
  • Many states have numerous restrictions on independent adoptions and a few states do not allow them at all.

Pathways to Adoption

Deciding what path you are going to take for adoption is a completely personal choice. Both pathways to infant adoption have many benefits depending on what you are looking for in adoption. The adoption process may seem overwhelming in the beginning. However, with the right resources and support system, it can be done with minimal stress. Be sure to thoroughly research all of your options before making a decision.

Adoption Choices of Nevada

Depending on where you live, state law can vary. Be sure to research the regulations and requirements within your state when considering and pursuing second-parent adoption. Also, consult with your adoption agency and/or lawyer for more specific information pertaining to your individual circumstances. If you have questions about adoption in Reno, Nevada, reach out to one of our adoption professionals to begin a discussion.