Wednesday, January 9, 2008

adopting a child from another state

Children can be adopted across state, county, and city lines. The Interstate Compact for the Placement of Children - referred to as ICPC - establishes guidelines for this process to ensure that states understand and cooperate with these interstate adoptions. The current ICPC was drafted in 1960 and has been enacted by all states, the District of Columbia, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Updates to the ICPC are currently being reviewed. If you are interested in adopting a child who does not live in your state, check with your caseworker to request that the child's worker be contacted or - if you are more comfortable - contact the child's worker yourself. Ask what that state requirements are for adoption and indicate your interest in the specific child. Once you know what is needed to proceed, you can take the necessary steps. It is not difficult to complete the interstate paperwork and we are here to help you and your worker navigate through the ICPC process. Just let us know what you need!

You can talk directly with our AdoptUsKids staff by calling 1-888-200-4005 or you can register online at info@adoptuskids.org.

37 comments:

Anonymous said...

I can't get to the website that is posted to find out information on ICPC, is anyone else having that problem?

Anonymous said...

I've been somewhat disappointed. I really want to adopt a sibling group from another state. My case worker wants to focus on children in my home state. I

Anonymous said...

Hi. After convincing another State that we were merely another State (in the United States), not another country, we were able to fly over and pick up our children. It only took 8 months and a Court Hearing to release them to us - from the time we were selected as a possible resource for this sibling pair. The adoption process is on the way.

Anonymous said...

Hi,

Is it also possible to adopt a child/a sibling out of country?

Anonymous said...

It has been our experience that caseworkers will focus on home states and only work out of state if you initate the contact... this website is a great resource for that. More and more caseworkers are taking home study (approved with signatures) via email from prospective parents. Cuts the caseworker out of the initial step and keeps the state bias out.
We started the whole adoption process because my parents had a foster child in their home in another state that we wanted to adopt. Their state was ready to hand her over to us on the day her parental rights were terminated but our state would not grant us a homestudy under these conditions. They have an unoffical clause that you have to try to adopt within the state for 6 months before they will process an ICPC for you. Needless to say, we didn't get her but she was placed with a very nice family in my parents town. Things seem to be good for her. After this we were so upset with the state that we didn't go through with the home study for over a year. They did keep their end of the bargin and at the 6 month mark we did not have an in state placement so they have been working with us on ICPC placements.

cindy t said...

How long does it take for an interstate adoption? We are already a state certified foster adoptive home in TN. We have picked out a brother and sister in AR. and have been approved by the case workers and the ICPC paperwork was filed on the 3rd of January. About how long will it take to know that we are approved for these children?

Beth said...

We live in TN. and chose a fostercare service that has been letting us down for more than 1 1/2years now. We found a child that we wanted to adopt, in AL. and our Tn. agency could not get our home study finished. They are no longer taking home study's for this boy and we feel like we've lost a son! Please, get recomendations on the agency you choose. This one has been a bust!

Anonymous said...

My partner and I live in New Jersey. We followed the process as indicated by the State. We were told that once the home study is completed and the license is released we could look for adoption anywhere in the country. They even pointed us to this site. We found several children that we would like to get more information about and of course the Resource Worker is asking for our Home Study. Now we are being told that NJ will not release the study to outside agencies. They won't even provide a copy to us. The story keeps changing. So now we don't know who to believe.

Overall we are really getting tired of the double-talk. We've hired an independent agency to conduct another Home Study (at our expense). This way we can send it to any state agency.

Anonymous said...

It seems I am hearing that most states won't allow you to look out of your state. You probably went through your local social service agency. I suggest getting a private agency to do your homestudy. We did that in North Carolina because of the same reason. No one was even willing to help answer questions here if we weren't going through this state. It is really sad that children all over the US have people interested in adopting them but they sit there because their state wants them to stay instate. Maybe they just don't want the hassle of doing all the extra work involved in an ICPC. Anyway we sent our homestudy, which we own by going private, to California and were matched with some beautiful children there. You really have to be persistant and not give up. When one person tells you NO just remember that is what the ICPC was put in place for, you can adopt out of state no matter what they try and tell you.

Mem in MN said...

We have adopted three children from three different states. We live in MN but have adopted from AZ, MO, and VT. The agency we received our training through would not look at out of state children so we switched to a different agency who would. Our agency doesn't work with every state, however, and that has been an obstacle. We have found two of our children on the internet and the other child's worker found us through our agency's magazine that promotes families looking for children.
The first child was placed with us within a month after we were chosen, the second child was placed with us within two months after contacting us, and the third child was placed with us six months after we began talking with his caseworker. All three adoptions went very smoothly as far as the ICPC was concerned. We received poor information about the first child's behaviors and history but the other two children had extensive information available to us as they had both been in Residential Treatment Homes.
We have since been chosen for two other groups of children but declined the first pair after receiving information not disclosed until after we were chosen. The second pair of children was a different matter: they were both teenagers and the girl who was 14 decided that she didn't really want to be adopted by us so the state declined to place either of the kids with us. Mind you, this was after we had made a week long trip to NV to meet them. Kids who are 14 are allowed to decide whether or not they want to be adopted and, in this case, also affected whether their sibling could be adopted.
ICPC can go quickly, as it has in our cases, or it can take a while if an agency drags its feet getting it processed.

Spindee said...

My Husband and I are interested in Adopting, and we cant find out any info on the requirements. We would like to see if we even qualify. How would i find this info?

Thx

Anonymous said...

My husband and I were selected for an out of state child earlier this month. The paperwork was sent to the ICPC office immediately. Does anyone know if there is any type of time limits the ICPC office has to do their approval? We are so excited and can't wait to begin visits. Not having any sort of a know time frame is frustrating. You feel like you are just left hanging.

Anonymous said...

Most states did not even bother responding when I sent my homestudy for children listed as available for adoption. Most did not return calls or emails. Even my own state did not help me match with a child. I felt that I lost out on many children , but the children lose out on being adopted by great families.

After 6 months of unbeleiveable delays and hassels, I was selected to be the family for a boy from the AdoptUSKids website. Two months later, the paperwork was send to ICPC in NJ, and it was not completed when I arrived (a month later)to take placement of the child. Thankfully, the social worker found a work around and the child is in my home. This should be considered a success, but it has been 6 weeks and the ICPC paperwork is still not done. They are requiring another homestudy 'specific to adoption' be completed. This is the first I am hearing of this. My original homestudy was completed early this year and I was told it would be good for foster and adoption. Now I have this wonderful child in my home but without his much needed medical benefits. I am at a loss on how to get NJ to move forward with their process so that I can move forward with adopting.

rie said...

I have adopted two sibling that are not from my state, and they are striving by leap and bound. One of my adopted son was in special aide class and couldn't even read, but now he is in a regular class making A's and B's.

Upon the completion of this adoption I tried to adopt anothor sibling group but with me not getting no response I got discourage and stop looking and inquiring about them.

I am very much disappointed in the adoption system because they said they need people to adopt children, but I have call and e-mail worker with no avail. There are many children out there that will miss the opportunity to have a loving family because their worker refuse to place them.

Anonymous said...

Spindee,
Check out adoption.com, adoptus kids, or google adoption agency. You can request free information packets from most adoption agencies. That will be a big help in learning about the different types of adoptions and their requirements.

Winnie52a said...

Today we found out that we can adopt again.. out of our state but we can adopt... Because of this ADOPTUSKIDS blog we were called this AM by Dianne who let us know that she would get an answer and she did! The process of adopting is such a roller coaster ride! Sometimes we just wanted to get off the ride! But we didn't. I was told today that it does not matter if you adopt from your state or another state.. there are so many children out there that need homes.
This journey that you are taking is so emotional on everyone.. the children you are inquiring about sometimes come with alot of "baggage"...there will be days when you say "what am I doing wrong?" but you can do this! The rewards far out weigh the problems.
So, if you don't get the child you thought you just had to adopt.. look again and again...Get involved with Adoptuskids.. Ask all the questions you want..do not give up! because if you do that.. it is one more child with out a parent to love them...
We are just finishing our "out of state adoption" that went thru the ICPC. It took about 3 months to get everything done..be patient

Anonymous said...

This is Daryl Bender, the Assistant Director of DCF in New Jersey. If a DCF licensed family sees a special needs child in another state for whom they would like to be considered, they can either ask that the other state request a copy of their home study from their worker, or if they are interested in children in several states ask for a copy of their home study so they may foward it themselves. If a family has problems with getting a copy of their study, they can contact the Office of Adoption Operations in New Jersey to facilitate this.

Elizabeth Todaro said...

Beth-

I am sorry to hear about your negative experience with a foster care agency in Tennessee. Our organization is the RRT for Tennessee, and perhaps we could help connect you with another resource. Please feel free to contact me for a list of other agencies in Tennessee that may be helpful to you.
(My email is elizabeth.todaro@fcsnashville.org.)

Many Thanks,
Liz

Elizabeth Todaro said...

Beth-

I am sorry to hear about your negative experience with a foster care agency in Tennessee. Our organization is the RRT for Tennessee, and perhaps we could help connect you with another resource. Please feel free to contact me for a list of other agencies in Tennessee that may be helpful to you.
(My email is elizabeth.todaro@fcsnashville.org.)

Many Thanks,
Liz

Anonymous said...

My wife and I would like to foster-adopt in the future. For now, we're educating ourselves on the whole subject. Question: If we live in the upper-Midwest, is it best to search for a child within our state/region? Or is it common practice to match, say, a Florida child with a family in Seattle? (Which state did YOUR adopted child originate in, and where does he/she live now?) Let's hear back some answers. Thanks! :)

Maagiclady said...

If you get with a state agency, it seems the concensus dont want to match with out of state children. Most of the private agencies will match with a child in any state.
My agency is a private agency, and we got our siblings from California and flew them all to Pennsylvania to be with us.

Anonymous said...

CA to PA is quite a ways from home (of origin)! I've been to both of these states. Very different from each-other geographically, culturally, etc. etc. Were your kids okay with the move from the West Coast to the East Coast? (schools, family, etc.)

Maagiclady said...

Our kids made a tremendous adjustment to their move. I think the fact that we flew them here, and the fact that to kids, they really dont understand just how far it really is like we do, to them it was just moving.
They love all of their new friends and family, and to them this is HOME.
The biggest thing that helped them, was to let them use their new last names as soon as they got here ( not always the best thing in all cases) But when it came time to finalize, the children didnt have to worry about explaining why they have new names to their friends at school.

Anonymous said...

I have been trying to adopt from states other then my own, but having so much differculty. My agency will not release my home study, it is a private agency. I have been looking for twins and found several, as time goes by they are adopted and leaving me feeling empty. I have adopted one child from my state so far and working on a second one as long as it's through this agency and they do a convertion. They are not a adoptinon ageny, but a theraputic foster care. What do I do?

Anonymous said...

I am a mental health professional working with children in social services AND a licensed foster-to-adopt parent in CA. I have seen a successful ICPC placement of one of "my kids" (clients) who went to Texas, so I was surprised at all the trouble I have had personally with out-of-state adoption. I have had my homestudy sent regarding 5-6 children found on AdoptUSKids.org and only heard back from one; 4 of those children are still listed on AdoptUSKids as looking for families up to a year later. Both my caseworker and I have tried calling the caseworkers (most of whom are from SC) with no return calls, even after they requested the homestudy.
Here's my big question. The one social worker that did call me back about a child stated her parents are contesting the termination of parental rights so the child can't be placed out of state yet. The child I had placed in TX (that I worked with professionally) was in the same position with his mother but that didn't hold anything up. I've searched the internet and can't find any information to determine whether this is true of SC law or if the social worker is merely misinformed? Meanwhile the poor child has had another birthday and continues to wait... The social worker says it could take a year or more to go through all the appeals! Does anyone know if the IPCP deals with this?

Anonymous said...

My husband and I are certified to adopt through Youth Villages in TN. The adoption specialists are very helpful and supportive about adopting from within TN and outside (interstate). They have been a blessing to us. I would recommend them to anyone in TN that is getting resistance from their workers about interstate adoptions.

6rfun said...

Can anyone tell me how adoption subsidies work with interstate adoptions?

Anonymous said...

To MH professional living in CA - I not sure if it's in the law or it's policy here in South Carolina, but the state will not allow children who are a legal risk, meaning TPR hasn't occurred yet to be placed out of state. I am going to check into this more and will post my findings when I have some answers. We do have the problem here with workers not returning calls. I have brought this to the attention of the supervisors and administrators, so that they address this problem with the workers. If you will give me the names of the children and their case numbers I can look into this for you.
- Gail Groomster, SC RRT

Anonymous said...

New Jersey DYFS completes home studies for families interested in providing foster care, or who are interested in adopting the type of children we place in selected adoption homes (African American children, siblings, children over the age of 8, or children with severe physical, emotional, behavioral, or developmental challenges). Unlike private adoption agencies, there is no charge for completing these home studies, because we are trying to find resources for New Jersey's children. When someone has an adoption home study completed by a private agency, they pay for these services and the private agency has included in their fee, efforts on behalf of the family to locate a child. We must concentrate on seeking families for our children, and are not able to keep up with the demand for the many requests to send home studies to other states. For the last several years, we have been giving families a copy of their home study, when it is requested by them. If a family wishes to share their study with another state, they may do so. If another state/agency wants a copy of the family's study directly from DYFS, the agency must request the study in writing and we also need to have releases from the family. If another state decides to place a child with a New Jersey family, they must work with their Interstate Services Office and New Jersey's Interstate Office.

Peggy S, NJ RRT

Anonymous said...

We are in North Carolina, before my husband and I even read these blogs we have been down. There are not many children at all in NC under age 6. An it seems that other state will not even consider our homestudy being out of state and wanting a younger child. Our Lord can make anything happen. We just to do our part. What is our part..if the ICPC seems to come across negative.

Kate Kirkpatrick said...

Do you have to have parenting experience to adopt?

Prospective parents can foster or adopt whether they have experience parenting or not. Having a child or being unable to have children does not affect your eligibility to become a foster or adoptive parent.

Anonymous said...

This for Gail Groomster SC RRT
I too have had problems with getting workers not returning calls. I have submitted a home study for consideration of a sibling group and not here anything. Only told she would communicate thru my social worker, who also has not heard anything. What does it take to adopt a child these days? I have heard it is much easier to abroad (6 months max).

Anonymous said...

Hi NC anonymous – I am contacting you from the North Carolina RRT. Thanks for sharing your concern in regards to the ICPC process. I am hopeful that other NC families and professionals will respond to your particular concern with some helpful suggestions, tips and encouragement.

We often find that children in your preferred age range (6 years old and younger) are in sibling groups; are adopted by their foster parents; or have extensive special needs. However, there are always exceptions! You can search for available North Carolina children by visiting the following websites: adoptnckids.org or adoptuskids.org. These sites will also discuss services to approved adoptive families who are actively searching for a waiting child. These services may include online search tools, online inquiries, matching and referrals.

The ICPC process does work for families and children! You can learn more about the ICPC process by visiting the following website: http://www.dhhs.state.nc.us/dss/interstate/index.htm

Hang in there! Thanks for your willingness to share your concern on the AdoptUsKids blog!

Celleeta, SC RRT said...

Dear Anonymous, my name is Celleeta and i am a part of SC RRT. I would like to apologize for time it has taken for the caseworkers to get back in touch with you guys...i hope this does not discourage you in any way. You or your caseworker should call that particular caseworker until you reach him or her, so that you can get the answers you need.if for some reason you need additional help in reaching the caseworker, please let me know by responding on the blog and i will help you get in touch with that person any way i can. you are greatly appreciated for your interest in adopting....

Anonymous said...

I recently found out that my daughter (who was adopted in the Mariana Islands- a part of the US)'s cousin has been placed in foster care. The adoptive mother had the children removed from her home because of abuse in the state of New Jersey. I am very worried about the girl. Her and my daughter are only 6 months apart. I did get the email address from the caseworker, what are the requirements to be able to adopt in the islands- we are not a state but we are part of the united states- soon to be federalized? I want to be able to bring these girls back together again. I am willing to do whatever is necessary. The parent rights have not been terminated, but I want to be ready. Thank you for any help you can give me.
L. Barrion

Anonymous said...

I would recommend further discussion with the child's caseworker, supervisor, or casework supervisor in the Local Office. No mention was made about the child's name or where she is in NJ, otherwise, I could provide contact information. Without knowing the particulars of the case, I would not want to advise you to go and get a home study. The first step would be to let them know of your interest. There may be other relatives that have been contacted as resources for her. The Local Office would be able to tell you more about this child and the plans for her. If you would be a placement consideration, background checks would need to be completed and either a relative study or adoption home study would be needed. Normally, requests for relative studies in other states, would go through our Interstate office, and they would advise the Local Office how to proceed with a placement outside NJ. However, Interstate does not get involved with International placements. A determination would need to be made about working with the Mariana Islands. If you can give me a location, and the child's name, I may be able to direct you to the correct people to speak with or write to. I hope this is helpful to you.

Peggy Stofik
NJ Adoption Resource Exchange Supervisor.

Anonymous said...

Guam and the U.S. Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands make up the Mariana Islands. International adoption services are not needed for an adoption from any of the islands – only ICPC. Not knowing which of the islands you would be working with the best contact for you is:

Bureau of Social Services Administration
Hagatna, Guam
671-475-2653
671-475-2672

If someone at this office can’t help they can surely direct you to who can.


LaNae Gwilliam
National RRT Director
AdoptUsKids