FAQ’s for Adoptive Parents
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What kind of adoptions do you do?
We facilitate domestic adoptions. The majority of our placements are infants.
Are you a non-profit agency?
How are you funded?
We are funded by fees for service from adoptive parents and tax-deductible donations.
How long does it take to adopt a child?
The average wait time of families who apply to adopt a child through Catholic Charities is within two years of their home study approval.
Can I schedule a free informational session?
We hold group informational sessions on an as needed basis. Please call (813)-631-4370 to sign up for the next session.
How many children do you place per year?
It is unpredictable how many birth mothers will follow through with an adoption plan with us. The numbers vary by area served.
Who are the children you place?
Most of the children are infants whose ethnicity is representative of the demographics of Florida.
What criteria does Catholic Charities have for adoptive families?
We are a faith-based agency. We believe that the best interests of any child are served by growing up in a healthy family with good religious and moral values. At least one of the adoptive parents should be between the ages of 25 and 50. The adoptive parents must be legally married as husband and wife for at least two years with no more than two previous marriages. The adoptive parents should be in reasonable good health with no debilitating or terminal illnesses or chronic mental health issues. This is often evaluated on an individual basis after consulting with the parent’s physicians. Adoptive parents must be willing to provide the agency and/or birth parents with updates and pictures of the child for an agreed upon period after placement.
Can non-Florida families apply to adopt from your program?
Out-of-state adoptions are handled on a case by case basis following the laws of both Florida and the state of residence. Many of our pregnancy clients prefer to have their children placed with Florida families. Due to the size of our agency, we usually are able to fulfill our need for couples within the state of Florida.
How do you organize your waiting list?
We have a “pool” of approved, waiting families. Once your home study is approved and you are placed on the wait list, you prepare a profile book that our staff shows to pregnancy clients who are considering adoption. Birth families select their adoptive families.
When is the child placed with us?
Most birth families want their children to go home from the hospital with the adoptive family.
How long does a birth parent have to change their mind in Florida?
A birth mother cannot sign any legal documentation relinquishing her rights until 48 hours after the child is born. There is no revocation period in Florida, as long as the child is under 6 months of age. If the child is over 6 months of age, there is a 3 day revocation period.
Do you do open adoptions?
We provide all types of adoptions: open, closed, and semi-open. Many of our placements are open and the degree of openness is mutually agreed upon between the birth and adoptive families.
Do you provide any education or training classes?
Education is paramount in preparing our adoptive parents for success. We believe in providing adoptive parents with the right tools by using orientation and education classes where couples are able to interact and ask questions. They also have the opportunity to meet previous clients: birth mothers, adoptive parents, and adult adopted persons. Education classes are a part of our home study process.
Can you help us with a designated adoption?
Absolutely. Call for us details. We can help if both parties live in Florida, or if only the birth parent resides in this state. Regular adoption fees are applicable.
How much does it cost?
We have a set fee for our home studies and adoptions. There are Regular Adoptions and Special Needs Adoptions, but the fees do not vary within those categories. Each program offers a schedule or payments, which is outlined in the Service Agreement every family signs. We strive to maintain reasonable and affordable fees with the lowest possible financial risk to the adoptive family. The upfront cost is minimal to the adoptive family and the majority of the fee is not due until after a child is placed in their care. There is emotional risk with every adoption plan, but we lower the financial risk to the couple by not charging placement fees until after the child is placed in their care. Please contact us for our current fee schedule.
Why does adoption cost so much?
Catholic Charities, like many non-profit adoption agencies, is privately funded by fees for service to adoptive families. We accept no government funding, and we provide free services to birth families residing in Florida.
What services do adoption fees cover?
Professional services for adoptive couples: counseling, education, home studies, post placement supervision, post final support other than legal
Professional services for birth parents: pre-natal counseling and post placement counseling
Birth parent expenses: medical, housing, transportation, living expenses
Other expenses covered: cradle care services (if needed), administrative costs, telephone service and office supplies, postage and shipping, advertising and printed materials, program office rent and utilities, program legal and accounting fees
Fees paid in conjunction with adoption services are non-refundable.
Legal fees associated with the finalization of the adoption are not included.
Do you accept credit card payment?
Yes, however the credit card fee will be added to the amount billed.
When are fees or payments due?
Adoption fees are due as services are provided. They are broken up into six payments: Application Fee, Home Study Completion Fee, Approval and Admission Fee, Placement Fee, Fee after Termination of Parental Rights, and Fee prior to Finalization. The only expense not covered is the attorney’s legal fee for finalization; this is the responsibility of the adoptive couple.