How Adoption Works
Your Guide to Adoption Paperwork: 4 Documents You Need
The four types of adoption paperwork every prospective birth mother will have to fill out are:
Each one is a vital part of the process.
But what goes into each adoption form? Let’s take a look.
Adoption Paperwork #1: Adoption Plan
An adoption plan is the template you create that outlines your expectations for the adoption. It includes:
- What you’re looking for in an adoptive family: When you fill out your adoption plan, you’ll be able to decide exactly what you want the perfect family to look like. You might start thinking about what kind of school you want your child to go to, where the adoptive parents live, if they’re from the same background from you and more. No matter what you’re looking for, your adoption professional can help you find them.
- Your contact preferences before, during and after the adoption: Adoption doesn’t have to mean saying goodbye forever. Instead, many women choose to develop a deep and fulfilling relationship with their child and the adoptive family through pictures, letters, phone calls, emails and more. When you make your adoption plan, you can choose to have an open, semi-open or closed adoption.
When you decide to place your baby for adoption, you are in charge of every step. If you ever need any help while you’re filling out this form, you can always reach out to your professional.
Adoption Paperwork #2 Social Medical History Form
Your social medical history form is one of the most important pieces of adoption paperwork that you’ll fill out.
This form gives your adoption professional an overview of your medical history, your family’s medical history, and any history of substance usage. There are also forms for the prospective birth father and for older children (if you are not placing a newborn for adoption).
We know that there could be some information that you don’t feel comfortable sharing, and you might be worried about having to fill out this adoption form. But it’s important to be as honest as you can. The information you provide will make sure that your child is placed with a family who is prepared to parent whatever unique needs they may have. For example, this adoption form will make it easier to find a family who is ready to embrace a transracial adoption, cultural differences or any potential medical needs. Rest assured that anything you disclose with your adoption professional is strictly confidential. Your privacy will always be respected.
Adoption Paperwork #3 Adoption Consent Forms
This is also another important part of your adoption forms. Basically, the consent adoption forms relinquish your parental rights and transfer them to the adoptive family. These forms must be filled out before the adoption can be legally completed.
How long you’ll have to sign your consent to the adoption will depend on your state’s laws. Normally, it can be anywhere from 24 hours to a few days.
After you sign your consent to the adoption, you also have a period of revocation in which you can change your mind about the adoption. Once again, how long you have to change your mind will depend on the state you live in.
Once this period passes, however, you won’t be able to change your mind and get your baby back. That’s why it is so important that you are 100% percent on board with adoption.
If you’re unsure about the adoption process or if you have any doubts while filling out your consent to adoption forms, don’t hesitate to reach out to your professional.
Remember, the adoption cannot move forward without your consent. No one can pressure you to sign your consent adoption forms when you’re not ready.
Adoption Paperwork #4: Hospital Plan
A hospital plan, or an adoption birth plan, is similar the adoption plan you create at the start of your journey. Instead of focusing on what you want your adoption to look like, this plan focuses on your plans for the hospital stay.
Most women choose to make a birth plan for their labor and delivery. It helps simplify the hospital stay so that they know what to expect.
A woman who chooses adoption for her baby will have to think about the typical questions — like where she wants to give birth and whether she wants to take medication — as well as a few more that are specific to the adoption process.
As she fills out this “giving up for adoption” form, she will have to ask herself:
- Does she want the adoptive family in the room with her during the adoption?
- Does she want to take pictures with the adoptive family and her baby?
- Does she want to nurse her baby?
- Does she want to leave the hospital with the adoptive family?
- And more
You also have the right to change or update your hospital plan whenever you need to. Just reach out to your adoption professional when you need to make any changes.
Who Can Help Me Fill Out My Adoption Paperwork?
Your adoption counselor will be there to help every step of the way. We know that all this paperwork seems intimidating, especially when you have so much to complete. And it might be confusing to fill it out all on your own.
If you have any questions while you’re filling out your adoption paperwork, please don’t hesitate to reach out to your professional. These adoption forms are an important part of the process, and the last thing your professional wants is for you to feel stuck while you’re filling them out.
What Happens After I Fill Out My Adoption Paperwork?
Once your professional has all of your adoption forms, they can start putting your plan into action.
They will begin by finding adoptive parents who match what you’re looking for. Once they do, they will send you a group of adoptive family profiles.
If you find what you’re looking for right away, you can move onto the next step, which is pre-placement contact. If not, they will be more than happy to send you additional profiles until you find what you’re looking for.
After you find a family, it’s time to start getting to know them. The first time you speak with them will typically be through a mediated call with your adoption professional. After that, you can share as much contact as you would like through phone calls, emails, texts, video calls, and even in-person visit.
Before you know it, it will be time for the hospital stay. Your adoption professional will distribute your hospital plan ahead of time so that everyone knows what you want this day to look like. After the delivery, it will be time for you to finish the “giving child up” for adoption legal papers, sign your consent to the adoption and prepare for post-placement life.
When you contact an adoption agency, they can help you with each and every step of your adoption application for pregnant women. If you’re ready to get started, please fill out our form to be connected to an adoption professional.
Ready to get started? Contact an adoption agency now to get free information.