Making the choice to adopt is one of the most important decisions a person can make. But deciding to adopt is just the beginning. Once you know that’s the way you want to go the next major step is to determine whether you should adopt privately or through the State. Many may not know what the differences are, but there are important distinctions to consider.
First, a private adoption can cost considerably more than adopting through the State. According to the website Adoption Help.Org, the cost of a private adoption can be as much as $30,000 or more, while the cost for an adoption through the State is about $1,000 and in some cases it costs nothing (go to www.adoptionhelp.org ). And while a private adoption allows the prospective parents to have the chance to adopt a new born, there is a larger pool of older children available through the State of Florida.
Private adoptions also allow for a chance to have an open adoption, where the adoptive parents and birth parents remain in contact and exchange open communication so that the adopted child can always ask any questions about how their family can to be if they choose to ask. In the State of Florida, while there is a registry that may yield some information for the adoptive child, there is less of an opportunity for open lines of communications between the families. In most cases, children adopted through the State are in foster care and have little to contact with their biological families.
Children adopted through the State have often experienced a great deal of trauma and many are deemed special needs for one reason or another. And while many may believe that children adopted privately don’t suffer from as many issues, that isn’t always the case. Many families seeking assistance from the Sylvia Thomas Center, one of the few agencies finding resources for adoptive parents, say their children adopted through private agencies are also in need of services. A child with special needs adopted through the State is often eligible for assistance through Medicaid until age 18, a benefit parents who adopted privately don’t have. Explore Adoption, a website sponsored by the State of Florida lists many of the benefits parents can receive when adopting through the State, go to www.adoptflorida.org for more information.
Making the decision to adopt through a private agency or through the State is an important one. The age of the child you are looking to adopt, whether or not you can handle a child with special needs, and your financial status are some of the major factors that will drive your decision. Experts suggest doing a great amount of research on the matter before making the decision.