When adopting special needs children in New York State, you are allowed to negotiate an adoption subsidy, depending on the severity of the special need. In addition, you are allowed to re-negotiate that subsidy as the child’s needs or the family circumstances change.
Educating yourself about adoption subsidy is critical before your adoption is complete, as well as after. I completed our adoptions in Fulton County Family Court. Fulton County DSS did NOT refer to the process as a negotiation. Rather, they said what the adoption subsidy they were willing to make available to me was, and I could accept it or go without. Had I known what my rights were, my children would have received the subsidy they were entitled to far earlier than they actually received it. It is not in the best interest of the social service agency to tell you what your rights are, as it causes an artificial increase in their budget. While they act like you are taking food from their tables, remember that the subsidy is federally funded or state funded, and not coming out of the county budget at all.
The primary difference between the two adoption subsidy types, as I understand it, are this: Title IV-E is a federally funded adoption subsidy, and the other type is state funded. Title IV-E is written from the same grant funds as SSI funds, making the child who receives adoption subsidy ineligible for SSI, which is usually less. State funded adoption subsidies are not automatically ineligible for SSI, meaning that the special needs child may be eligible for both the subsidy and SSI.
Resources on adoption subsidy: