Frequently Asked Questions
Questions A Birthmother or Birthfather May Have About the Adoption Process
How much control do I have in selecting the adoptive family?
You have full control in selecting the adoptive family of your choice.
What help can I receive during the adoption process?
In Alabama, it is legal to receive financial help for maternity related expenses during your pregnancy and one month afterwards while you are recuperating. You can obtain counseling, should this be desired. You can obtain a lawyer to represent you, which can be paid by the adoptive couple, if you feel this is in your best interest.
Also, a professional who handles adoption cases, can connect you with resources in the community to assist you in enrolling in Moms Care Medicaid; enrolling in the WIC program; enrolling in job skills classes; and other programs from which you may benefit at this time in your life.
In my law practice, I, routinely, attempt to connect birthparents with other resources in the community where their best interests may be served.
What is the cost to a birthparent for receiving adoption help?
There is no cost to a birthmother or birthfather for obtaining help with an adoption.
What if I desire openness?
If you desire, you have the opportunity to not only receive information and contact with the adoptive family prior to the birth, but you can also receive information and contact after the birth and the adoption of the child. The nature of this information and contact depends on each specific case and the various parties involved.
Questions A Prospective Adoptive Family May Have About the Process
What are the costs a family can expect to pay for an infant adoption?
I have always maintained a policy of charging by the hour for the legal services I provide, as opposed to charging my clients a flat fee for their case. I find that this is to the client’s advantage, especially in adoption cases. Each case is different, with various facts involved and various amounts of time required to handle the case. This way, the client is only charged for time that is required.
Besides the cost of legal services, often, an adoptive family can expect to pay maternity expenses which a birthmother incurs. These expenses vary with each adoption, due to the facts of the case.
Also, in the case of an unrelated adoption, a Homestudy is required to be performed on the adoptive family by a social worker, licensed in the state in which you live.
How long does it take for a prospective adoptive family to adopt an infant?
After practicing adoption law for twenty years and handling hundreds of cases, I have learned that this entirely depends upon the uniqueness of each individual client and what their expectations are in the adoption process. I have had some clients who I have been able to help adopt within six months. I have had some clients whose adoption process took over two years. Then, on occasion, I have had some prospective adoptive families who I have never been able to help achieve an infant adoption.