Adoption in Oregon
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What You Need to Know about Placing your Baby for Adoption in Oregon
Making the decision to place your child for adoption can be one of the toughest, but selfless choices you make, but being well-informed about the process may help ease some of your stress. The following information will provide some important factors to think about when considering placing your child for adoption in Oregon.
Who Must Consent to an Oregon Adoption and How Does it Work?
In Oregon, adoption consent must be given in writing by the following:
- The child’s parents
- The child’s legal guardian
- The child themselves if they are at least 14 years old
- The child’s next of kin if he or she has no living guardian
- A court-appointed person if the child has no living guardian and the next of kin is not able to give consent
When is Consent not Necessary for Adoption in Oregon?
Adoption consent is not required from the child’s parent if he or she:
- Intentionally neglected the child and failed to provide care for the child for 1 year before filling for adoption
- Has been declared mentally ill and unable to provide consent
If the child’s Birth Mother was married at the time of the child’s conception and her husband is not the Birth Father, his consent is not required.
Can a Birth Parent Revoke their Consent to Adoption?
Consent to adoption may not be revoked after the following have been completed:
- A home study is filed and the court approves the Adoptive Parents
- Information about the child’s social, medical, and genetic history has been determined
- The consenting parent has filed a petition for adoption
- The child is placed for adoption with their new guardian
- The person signing this given consent to adoption has been provided an explanation of the consequences of this certificate
Revocation of consent to adoption in Oregon may only be revoked if the court finds it was given under fraud or duress.
This consent of irrevocability is not valid for a child who is subject to the Indian Child Welfare Act.
What Rights do Birth Fathers have in the Adoption Process?
In Oregon, a man is considered a child’s Presumed Father, which grants him parental rights, if:
- He and the Birth Mom are married at the time of the child’s birth
- He and the Birth Mom were married to each other, but got divorced and the child was born within 300 days of the termination of their marriage
Paternity of a child may also be established by:
- A voluntary acknowledgement of paternity process in another State
- A voluntary acknowledgement of paternity with the State Registrar of the Center for Health Statistics
- Legally being declared the father by a court of law
- A marriage of the parents after the child is born, if the parents file a voluntary acknowledgement of paternity form with the State Registrar of the Center for Health Statistics
Adopting a Baby in Oregon
Adoption is no easy decision, but it is a life-changing one, so it is important that you understand the process before you begin your journey. Continue reading from more information about the adoption process in Oregon or scroll to the end of the article for a list of adoption agencies to help get you started.
What are the Laws and Requirements for Adopting a Child in Oregon?
To be eligible to adopt a child in Oregon, you must be at least 21 years old unless one of the following applies:
- The applicant is a relative who is at least 18 years old and the child welfare agency has approved the adoption
- The child is an Indian child and the adoptive applicant is a member of the child’s extended family, Tribe or another Indian family
In addition to the age requirement of 21, eligibility will require you to meet the following:
- Complete a home study that recommends you to become an Adoptive Parent
- Complete the required adoption training program
- Demonstrate the knowledge, skills and ability to care for the child’s:
- Physical well-being
- Emotional well-being
- Connections to his or her Birth Family
- Integration into the adoptive family
- Stability and permanency in the family
- Identity, culture, religion, and spiritual heritage
- Social, educational, and developmental needs
How Much does it Cost to Adopt a Baby?
Oregon adoption expenses may vary depending on the type of adoption you decide to pursue. International adoption will be different from a domestic adoption, and adoption from a private agency will be different from a government agency. In Oregon, all expenses related to adoption must be included in a written disclosure agreement.
Regardless of the type of adoption you decide to pursue, here are a few expenses you may need to consider when becoming an Adoptive Parent:
- Legal and agency fees
- Medical expenses from the Birth Mother and child
- Adoption-related travel expenses
How do you Become a Foster Parent?
To become a Foster Parent in Oregon, you must meet the following minimum requirements:
- Be at least 21 years old
- Have sufficient income to care for the child
- Be physically able to care for the child
- Pass a child abuse and criminal background check
- Complete and pass the home study investigation
If you are interested in becoming a Foster Parent, click here to learn about the steps needed to complete the process and how to get started.
Can you Finalize an International Adoption in Oregon?
In order to adopt a child internationally, the child must be from a country that is a part of the Hague Convention, which is an international agreement that establishes standard adoption practices for intercountry adoptions.
- Be a U.S. Citizen
- If married, your spouse must also be a U.S. Citizen or have legal status and together you must file for adoption
- Pass criminal background checks, the home study process and fingerprinting
- If unmarried, be at least 25 years old
Who can Legally Facilitate an Oregon Adoption?
There are many agencies, attorneys, and facilitators offering adoption services in Oregon, so it is important to understand the differences between them.
Agencies are regulated businesses and attorneys are experts in adoption law, both licensed and trained in adoption processes.
Adoption Facilitators are individuals who are usually unlicensed and unregulated that match Prospective Adoptive Parents with expectant Birth Mothers.
In Oregon, it is illegal for any person or agency, unless they are licensed, to charge, accept or pay a fee related to adoption services.
Home Study and Post Placement Requirements in Oregon
What is a Home Study and What Happens During the Process?
Before adopting a child, a Prospective Adoptive Parent and his or her family must undergo a home study to assess their ability to care for a child and provide a safe, stable home environment. This process will also help determine what kind of adoption is appropriate for the family and what child will fit best within their lifestyle.
In Oregon, the home study process will include and require the following:
- At least 4 references, 2 of which can be relatives of the Prospective Parents
- A home safety assessment
- Interviews with everyone living in the home
- A description of the Prospective Parents social and family history
- A criminal background check
- Information about any current or past licenses for foster care, daycare or adoption
- For each person 18 years or older living in the home:
- Any information regarding current or past criminal involvement
- A criminal background and child abuse background check
- Information about any child abuse allegations
While this process is to ensure that adoption is in the best interest of both the child and family, it is also a time for the family to ask questions, make any necessary adjustments, and prepare for a new member to the family.
Who Oversees a Home Study in Oregon and Who is Included in it?
In Oregon, the home study process may be conducted by a licensed adoption agency or the Department of Human Services. Everyone in the Prospective Adoptive home who is a least 18 years old will be included.
Why Would my Home Study not be Approved?
In Oregon, the following may be grounds for disapproval of your home study and eligibility to adopt:
- The Prospective Adoptive home does not meet the safety standards
- The Prospective Parent falsifies information
- The Prospective Parent has license to provide services to children, the elderly or people with disabilities that has been or is currently being denied, revoked, or suspended
- The Prospective Parent has been convicted of a felony that involves:
- Abuse or neglect of a child
- Spousal abuse
- Sodomy or sexual abuse
- Violence, including rape, sexual assault, or homicide
- Aiding, attempting, or soliciting to cause the death of a child
- A crime against a child, including child pornography
- Other crimes including:
- Rape, incest, sodomy or sexual abuse
- Burglary or robbery, if the crime involves violence
- Child neglect or abandonment
- Felony assault of a child or spouse
- Physical assault or battery within 5 years of attempting to adopt
- A drug-related offense within 5 years of attempting to adopt
What are the Requirements for Adopting a Child from Another State?
If you are a resident of Oregon, but are presented with the opportunity to adopt a child who was born in another state, you must comply with the provisions of the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children, which is a contract among the states to ensure safe adoptions across state lines.
Is a Home Study Different for Stepparent or Relative Adoptions?
In Oregon, the home study assessment will not be required for a stepparent or relative adoption unless otherwise ordered by the court.
What are the Requirements for a Foster to Adopt Placement in Oregon?
“Foster to Adopt” is when a foster parent or family decides to adopt a foster child that is currently in their care.
The goal of foster care is to eventually reunite the child with his or her family, but in the case that reunification is not an option, the foster parents may be eligible to adopt the child. In Oregon, all of the following circumstances or requirements must be met before a foster parent can request to adopt a child in their care:
- The child has been in the foster parent’s care for at least 12 months
- The Foster Parent is willing to adopt the child’s siblings, if applicable
- Adoption is determined to be in the child’s best interest
- The caseworker confirms that there are no pending actions to:
- Identify a child’s relatives or a sibling’s current guardian
- Assess a relative who has expressed an interest in adoption or is currently being assessed for potential adoption
What is a Post Placement Requirement and What Happens During the Process?
A post placement assessment is an evaluation of the child’s integration into the adoptive family’s home that takes place before the adoption can be finalized. It is meant to ensure that the child and family were a good fit for adoption.
In Oregon, the post placement assessment will include the following:
- Monthly face-to-face visits with the child and family
- An assessment of the child’s safety and well-being in the new home
- Advice and recommendation of services needed to help the Adoptive Parents care for the child
After the assessment is completed, a written report of the agency’s findings and recommendation to the court determining whether or not adoption should be finalized will be submitted.
Oregon Adoption Agencies and Professionals
Going through the adoption process can feel overwhelming at times, but the adoption professionals in Oregon are eager to help you throughout your journey. Whether you are looking to adopt a child or deciding to place your child for adoption, the following agencies are ready to offer you support, advice, and answers to your questions as you pursue the adoption process:
Is your adoption journey bringing you to the beautiful and green state of Oregon? Here’s a list of some of The Beaver States’ exciting spots to visit while you await the process:
Mount Hood and Timberline Lodge In the Cascade Mountain Range
Evergreen Aviation and Space Museum in McMinnville
Portland Japanese Garden