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What can I expect from my Michigan adoption process?

Do you know the differences in procedures between a private and a public foster adoption? Both options are available for someone who is looking to expand their family through adoption, but each has its own benefits and drawbacks. Today, we look at the characteristics of both private and public adoption and help you determine which to pursue based on your family's needs and preferences.

What are the wait times for each type of adoption in Michigan? In general, private adoption is faster than going through the foster care system. You can usually finalize a private adoption within a one- to 12-month period. However, foster care adoptions can take as long as five years, depending on the situation. This is because social services departments prioritize returning children to their biological parents rather than permanently placing them with another family. Older children tend to be easier to adopt through the foster care system.

How involved will the birth parents be? For private adoption, the involvement of the birth parent is often up to the birth mother's discretion. Many private agencies require that the parents be open to at least some contact with the birth mother. Public entities vary on the amount of interaction that parents are expected to have with biological parents -- in general, though, the birth parents will not have much contact.

What about the degree of uncertainty for each type of adoption? Although some birth parents decide that they want to rescind their offer of adoption through a private service, the risk is far lower than going through the public system. Parents who are looking to adopt quickly would be smarter to go through a private agency in many cases, rather than waiting for the legal process associated with the transition from foster care.

Making the choice to proceed with adoption can be exciting, but it can also be overwhelming. A Michigan adoption law firm can help you and your loved ones identify the right type of adoption for your goals. You deserve a smooth adoption process, and we are here to help!

Source: American Adoptions, "The Differences Between Private and Foster Adoption," accessed Oct. 29, 2015

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