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What Should I Consider When Making an Adoption Plan?

Creating an adoption plan may seem overwhelming, but a thoughtful plan is vital to your peace of mind that your selected adoptive family aligns with your hopes and expectations for your child. A planned adoption process is designed to ensure that your child’s future is secure and that your child will grow up in a loving and supportive environment consistent with your values. An adoption plan can help make the transition smoother for you, your baby, and the adoptive family.

Adoption is a deeply personal journey that is unique to each parent. Taking time to craft a thoughtful adoption plan will help you clearly and accurately articulate your needs, desires, and expectations. At Hausmann & Hickman, P.A., we understand that this process is emotional and complex, and we strive to provide you guidance and support every step of the way.

What is an Adoption Plan?

An adoption plan is a roadmap that outlines how you want the adoption process to unfold. An adoption plan helps ensure that your wishes for your child are clearly communicated and honored. Through an adoption plan, you can detail all aspects of your adoption journey from the type of family you wish for your child to the level of contact you would like to have with the adoptive family and your child before, during and after your placement.

A comprehensive adoption plan also serves as a guide for the adoptive family, the adoption agency, and other entities involved in your adoption process. A plan should encapsulate your vision regarding the adoptive family’s role during the birth, placement and transition of your child and will help you prepare for the emotional experience of an adoption placement.  It is a thoughtful and considerate process that requires careful deliberation and the courage. Most importantly, a comprehensive plan places you in charge of your adoption, incorporates your values, beliefs and allows you to have a significant role in shaping your child’s future.


While creating an adoption plan, you have the autonomy to express your preferences to ensure your plan reflects your courage and commitment to a secure, loving future for your child.

What Should I Consider When Making My Adoption Plan?

Several critical factors should be considered when drafting an adoption plan. One primary consideration is what level of open communication you would like to have with the adoptive family and your child such as an open, semi open, or closed adoption best meets you and your child’s interests. An open adoption allows you to maintain contact with your child and the adoptive family through a range of options such as scheduled in-person visits, phone calls, videos, or letters.  Aa semi-open adoption involves limited contact through written updates and pictures.  A closed adoption involves no contact after the adoption.  The concept of openness in your adoption is fluid and we recommend that you work with an adoption professional when considering all your options.

Identify the characteristics you want in your selected adoptive family.  You should consider facts to look for such as their values, lifestyle, education, and other children in the home. Preferences such as religious or cultural background, or the geographical location of the family maybe significant to your selection.

A detailed hospital “birth” plan is essential to ensure your wishes are respected during this sensitive time.  A birth plan should include your preferences on who is present when you deliver your child, the interactions with the adoptive parents at the hospital, and the time that you spend with your baby after birth.

Your emotional well-being is the most important element of any adoption plan. Adoption is a significant decision that can carry emotional ramifications. Make sure you have a support system in place, whether it’s family, friends, or a counselor.

Do You Have Questions About Your Adoption Plan?

Navigating through the adoption process and creating an adoption plan may feel overwhelming. The attorneys at Hausmann & Hickman, P.A. are here to guide you through this process. Whether you need assistance in creating your adoption plan or have general questions about adoption, we’re here to help.

Our team is committed to maintaining your privacy. We assure you that all conversations are strictly confidential and treated with the utmost respect. You can feel comfortable discussing your hopes, fears, and questions with us, knowing that we are here to provide answers and guidance.

You are not alone in this journey. Let us stand by your side, providing legal guidance and emotional support as you make the best decisions for you and your baby. The team at Hausmann & Hickman, P.A. is dedicated to helping birth mothers navigate the adoption process with knowledge, confidence, and compassion. We welcome the opportunity to assist you during this significant time in your life.

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Can I Make an Adoption Plan for My Baby After Birth?

If you are pregnant and considering placing your child for adoption, we are here to assist. As experts in Florida adoption law, Hausmann & Hickman, P.A. can help you navigate the complexities of the adoption process, answer your questions and provide support and guidance along the way.

When considering an adoption placement, parents frequently ask whether they can make an adoption plan after their baby’s birth.  This answer is YES.   Every woman’s situation is unique, and we understand that making decisions about an adoption placement of your child may not always align with the expected timelines.  We encourage every parent to take their time to fully consider their options and only proceed with an adoption plan when they are certain an adoption placement is the best decision for them and their baby.

Whether you are well into your pregnancy, in the hospital after delivery, or taking care of your newborn at home, it is never too late to ask questions and seek professional advice. We are here to reassure you that Hausmann & Hickman, P.A. is committed to helping you find the best possible future for both you and your baby, regardless of your decision.

Can I Create an Adoption Plan After My Baby is Born?

The answer to this important question is a definitive yes. While many birth mothers elect to establish an adoption plan during pregnancy, some women decide on adoption after the birth of their child. A decision to start an adoption plan after their child’s birth may happen for a variety of reasons, and it is essential to know that there is no ‘one size fits all’ approach to adoption.

Post-birth adoption plans are not uncommon. Many times, the hospital environment following delivery can provide a birth mother time to reflect and provide her the space and time needed to weigh her options and make a decision that she believes are best for her and her child. In other circumstances, a mother may decide to take the baby home before she realizes over time that she is not prepared or able to provide the kind of life she wants for her child. In these situations, a post-birth adoption is an option and positive parenting decision that will ensure a child’s future well-being consistent with the hopes and dreams that a birth mother has for her child.

It is also important to understand that starting an adoption plan after your child’s birth doesn’t require you to rush through the process or take the time you need to assure you have made all the best decisions for your child.  Birth mothers who start this process post-birth are given the same consideration, care, and time to make informed decisions. It may seem overwhelming at first, but remember that adoption agencies and professionals such as Hausmann & Hickman, P.A. are there to guide and support you through each step of the process.

Please be assured that adoption is not an option that closes once your baby is born. Rather, adoption always remains a viable, loving, and selfless option for birth mothers who decides this path is the right parenting decision for their child.

Is an Adoption Plan Important?

An adoption plan empowers a birth mothers to take control of her adoption process. An adoption plan is an invaluable roadmap that enables you to make decisions about your baby’s future based on your preferences, values, and wishes. So, yes, having an adoption plan is not only important—it’s essential.

The adoption plan allows you to choose the type of adoption you desire—be it open, semi-open, or private. This choice can dictate the level of contact you’ll maintain with your baby and the adoptive family, from regular visits and updates to no contact at all. The decisions are yours.

When making an adoption plan, you will handpick the adoptive family and specify preferences about the family’s background, values, lifestyle, other children, and even pets. You can meet potential families, ask questions, and choose the family that feels right for your child. This is perhaps one of the most empowering aspects of the adoption plan—it gives you a say in the kind of environment and upbringing your baby will have.

By selecting an open or semi-open adoption plan, you are able to establish post-placement contact agreements, detailing the type and frequency of updates or visits you’d like to have with your child and the adoptive family. The plan isn’t set in stone and can change over time based on the comfort level and agreement of all parties involved. It serves as a guide that ensures your baby’s adoption aligns with your vision and comfort level.

Interested in Learning More?

If you’re curious to know more about creating an adoption plan or if you have any other adoption-related questions, the expert Florida adoption attorneys at Hausmann & Hickman, P.A. are here to help. We understand that this is a significant decision and we want to provide you with all the information you need to make the best choice for you and your baby.

We want to assure you that any conversation with us will be strictly confidential and private. Our primary goal is to provide a supportive, non-judgmental space for you to explore your options. Our team is experienced and empathetic, committed to helping you navigate the adoption journey with the utmost care and professionalism.

Adoption is an act of love, and every journey is unique. Whether you’re considering making an adoption plan now or have questions about the process in the future, Hausmann & Hickman, P.A. is available to help you. Reach out to us today, and let’s take the next steps in this journey together.

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I’m Pregnant, What Are My Options?

Finding out you’re pregnant can be a moment filled with a whirlwind of emotions, especially when the future seems uncertain. For some women, the prospect of parenting may feel overwhelming, due to various personal or financial circumstances. If you find yourself in this situation, please remember, you have options. One such option that allows you to secure a promising future for your child is private adoption placement.

Through private adoption placement, you can find adoptive parents who can provide a loving and supportive home for your baby. This process, which offers a level of control and personalization not always available in an adoption through the child welfare system (foster to adopt) puts you, the birth mother, in the driver’s seat. At Hausmann & Hickman, P.A., our Florida adoption attorneys can guide you through this process, ensuring that your needs and the best interests of your child are at the forefront.

At Hausmann & Hickman, P.A., the private adoption placement is carried out without Department of Children and Families (DCF) involvement. This means that your baby can leave the hospital directly in the arms of the family you have carefully chosen for them. Importantly, as a birth parent, you should know that there is no cost to you for this process. The focus remains solely on helping you make the best decision for your child’s future​​.

What is Private Adoption Placement?

Private adoption placement is a type of adoption process where birth mothers have the opportunity to take an active role in planning their baby’s future. Through Hausmann & Hickman, P.A., birth mothers can customize their adoption plan to ensure their child is placed with a family that aligns with their hopes and values.

With private adoption placement, you get to choose the adoptive parents. This can be a deeply empowering process, allowing you to feel secure in knowing that your child is going to grow up in a home that you personally believe will provide them the love, care, and support they deserve. Furthermore, you get to determine the level of involvement you wish to have in your child’s life post-adoption, whether that is receiving regular updates or even having direct contact.

The control you have in a private adoption placement is extensive. You manage the timeline, the level of openness, and the adoptive family selection. This gives you the opportunity to shape the future of your child in a way that reflects your wishes and values.

Additionally, at Hausmann & Hickman, P.A., we provide you with personalized guidance throughout the entire process. We understand that this is a deeply personal journey, and we are committed to supporting you every step of the way.

How Private Adoption Can Be a Good Option

Choosing to place your child for adoption is a brave and selfless act. Private adoption, in particular, comes with a variety of benefits that can make this decision a positive alternative to parenting.

Firstly, private adoption allows you to select the adoptive parents for your child. You can choose a family that shares your values and dreams for your child’s future. Whether you’re looking for a family with a particular lifestyle, educational background, religious belief, or simply a loving environment, you have the ability to make that choice.

Assistance with your basic living expenses is available through a  private adoption. In many cases, the adoptive family can assist with living expenses, including rent, food, utilities, phone, maternity clothing, and transportation. This support can help alleviate financial pressures during pregnancy and recovery following delivery.  These expenses are reviewed and approved by the Court to assure compliance with the law and to protect your private adoption plan.

Private adoption also offers free supportive counseling. Deciding to place a child for adoption can be emotionally challenging, and having access to professional counselors can provide invaluable emotional support during this time.

Moreover, private adoption often allows for an “open adoption” arrangement. This means you can maintain a connection with your child and the adoptive family, if you choose. This level of ongoing involvement can provide peace of mind and allow you to maintain a meaningful connection.

Lastly, legal representation is a crucial benefit of private adoption. The Florida adoption attorneys at Hausmann & Hickman, P.A. are knowledgeable about state-specific adoption laws for each unique situation. As a birth parent, you will have the option to have your own legal representation during the adoption process at no cost to you, which can help you feel more secure and informed in the legal process of placing a child for adoption.

Interested in Learning More?

If you are pregnant and unsure about what to do next, remember you are not alone. There are supportive resources and professionals ready to assist you in exploring your options.

At Hausmann & Hickman, P.A., we understand the challenges and emotions you may be facing. As a team of compassionate Florida adoption attorneys, we are here to guide you through the complexities of the adoption process, ensuring that you are informed, comfortable, and confident with each step.

Whether you want to learn more about the process, explore the benefits, or simply have a conversation about your situation, we welcome you to reach out to us.

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How Do You Find Adoptive Parents?

Making the decision to place your baby for adoption is an incredibly personal choice. At Hausmann & Hickman, P.A., we understand the weight of this decision and are dedicated to supporting birth mothers throughout this process. We offer a private adoption placement process, allowing birth mothers to choose the adoptive parents for their baby. This allows birth mothers to ensure that their child’s future aligns with their dreams for them​​. We maintain a list of profiles for waiting adoptive families. If you do not find your match within our list, we will assist you in finding the right adoptive family through outreach to our network of adoption consultants.

When choosing to work with Hausmann & Hickman, P.A., birth mothers maintain control over their adoption plan. This is your pregnancy, your baby, and your decision. Our team is here to guide and assist you in selecting an adoptive family, facilitating meetings with them if you desire, and creating a plan that incorporates your preferred level of openness in adoption. The choice of adoptive parents can be based on a variety of preferences important to you, such as marital status, age, religion, or whether you wish for your child to be their first​​.

The process of choosing adoptive parents is not to be rushed and we work closely with you to ensure that you select the family that you feel is the best choice for your baby.

Choosing the Adoptive Parents for Your Child

Selecting the adoptive family for your baby is a significant part of your adoption plan. This choice provides you a voice in your child’s future. When you create your adoption plan with us you are able to decide what is important to you for matching with the right adoptive family.

Once you’ve selected an adoptive family, you may choose to speak with them over the phone, meet them meet with them in person or through video chat. Meeting provides an opportunity to get to know the potential adoptive parents better, and our team will be there to assist you throughout this process. Adoptive parents are eager to share photos and update letters after your baby is born, allowing you to remain a part of your child’s life in a way that feels comfortable for you​​.  If you desire a more open relationship with the adoptive family and your child after placement, we will work with you to identify a family open to your goals.

You Are in Control of Your Child’s Adoption

At Hausmann & Hickman, P.A., we believe that the adoption process should be guided by the birth mother’s wishes and needs. This extends beyond the choice of adoptive parents and into the overall type of adoption and the level of involvement you wish to have. You are in control of your child’s adoption process, with the freedom to customize it to your comfort level and desires.

You may opt for an open, semi-open, or closed adoption. An open adoption is one where there is direct communication between the birth mother and adoptive parents, which may even include visits. In a semi-open adoption, there is still communication which usually will include scheduled photo and letter updates. A closed adoption is one where there is no contact or exchange of information between the birth and adoptive parents after the adoption. Closed adoptions are not currently common, but the level of openness is based on your own needs and comfort level with communication.

The level of involvement you wish to have is entirely up to you. You may choose to meet the adoptive family, have them attend prenatal visits, and even have them present for delivery. You may choose to create a communication agreement with the adoptive parents that includes photos and update letters after your baby is born. Our office will assist you with these details, and even attend your meeting with the adoptive family if you would like to help make everyone feel more comfortable. Adoption is your decision, and we are here to support you.

See Some of Our Adoptive Parents

We understand the importance of knowing about the family that you are considering for your child’s adoption. That is why we offer you the opportunity to view the profiles of our current prospective adoptive parents.

Each profile provides you with insights about the adoptive parents’ lifestyle, interests, values, and home environment. This information can help you in making an informed decision about the future of your child. You might find a family that shares your love of the outdoors, a specific faith, or maybe a family who has similar traditions. These shared interests can help you visualize your child’s future and make a selection with a family you feel connected to.

These profiles are just a starting point. After browsing through them, you might feel drawn to a particular family. If so, arrangements can be made for you to meet with them, either in person or through video chat. This personal connection can provide an additional layer of comfort and assurance in your decision-making process​​. On the other hand, if you do not see an adoptive family that fits what you’re looking for, let us know. We are constantly meeting with new families looking to adopt and can help you in finding one that fits with what you’re looking for.

Interested in Learning More?

If you are wanting to learn more about the adoption process or have specific questions, we welcome you to reach out and speak with one of our adoption attorneys. They are equipped with the knowledge and experience to answer your questions and guide you through the process.

Our goal is to support you in whatever way you need, whether that’s providing information, answering questions, or guiding you through your private adoption placement.

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How To Avoid an Adoption Scam

The following article was originally posted on the FBI website. We are sharing it on our blog to help raise awareness of red flags to look for when pursuing adoption for both adoptive parents and birth parents.

Adoption Fraud

Unethical adoption service providers can take advantage of an emotionally charged process to deceive and defraud prospective adoptive parents or birth parents considering adoption.

Learn what to look out for, how to protect yourself and your family, and what to do if you’re a victim.

Common Schemes

Double matching occurs when a birth mother’s baby is matched to more than one prospective adoptive parent.

Fabricated matching occurs when prospective adoptive parents are matched to a fictitious birth mother, a birth mother who is not pregnant, or a birth mother who is not genuinely interested in placing her baby for adoption.

Fee-related adoption schemes occur when adoption service providers require prospective adoptive parents to pay exorbitant fees upfront or on a recurring basis but fail to provide services promised.

How to Protect Yourself

When choosing an adoption service provider, do your research. Be aware of what fraudulent providers may do or ask you to do.

  • Misrepresent professional licenses or education
  • Make unsolicited contact to sign up birth mothers or prospective adoptive parents
  • Be difficult to reach via phone or email, despite multiple attempts
  • Unnecessarily control communications between adoption participants
  • Quote highly negotiable and inconsistent fees
  • Encourage prospective adoptive parents to pay expenses immediately to avoid losing out on opportunity to adopt
  • Demonstrate a pattern of requesting additional unexpected fees throughout the process
  • Make guarantees about the adoption process, such as:
    • Matching within a specified time-frame
    • Birth parents’ willingness to adopt
    • How quickly and easily the adoption will be legally finalized

Know other red flags to look out for during the adoption process.

  • Lack of proof of pregnancy or proof with inadequate details, like missing dates
  • History of failed adoptions due to unusual circumstances
  • Adoption participants pressured to sign documents they don’t fully understand
  • Adoption participants encouraged to falsify statements and documents to finalize the adoption

Additionally, birth parents should recognize signs of an exploitative situation, which may include:

  • Being coerced or manipulated into placing a child for adoption
  • Getting assigned prospective adoptive parents without being involved in the choice
  • Being pressured to follow through with an adoption or being told you will have to repay covered expenses if you change your mind
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Does An Adoption Affect Your Taxes?

With tax season approaching, many adoptive parents or prospective adoptive parents may have questions about how their adoption affects their taxes, and what they are able to claim for the year.

We have good news: the IRS allows adoptive parents to claim qualified adoption expenses including adoption fees, court costs,  travel expenses, and other expenses directly related to the adoption of a child. The maximum amount for the tax credit varies each year, but for 2021 is $14,440 per child. Visit the IRS website for the most updated information about the adoption tax credit.

In some instances, adoptive parents are eligible to claim their adoptive child as a dependent even if the adoption has not been finalized yet. In situations where adopting taxpayers are not able to obtain the child’s Social Security Number because the adoption is pending finalization, they may be able to apply for a temporary taxpayer identification number for the child, or an Adoption Taxpayer Identification Number (ATIN), to use on their tax return.

In order to apply for an ATIN, the adoption situation must meet certain requirements. Adoptive parents must be currently in the process of adopting a child, and the child must be legally placed in their home for legal adoption by an authorized adoption entity. The adoption must also be domestic, or foreign only if the child possesses a Permanent Resident Alien Card or Certificate of Citizenship, and adoptive parents must have made a reasonable effort to obtain the child’s social security number but they are unable to obtain it because the adoption has not been finalized. For more information on the adoption, temporary taxpayer identification number, and requirements to apply, visit the IRS’s Q&A page regarding the ATIN program.

Please note: we are not accountants and cannot give tax advice. Please consult with an accountant for specific financial and tax advising.

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Adoption Reunions – Thoughts from an Adoption Attorney

At the office one morning after just completing an adoption final hearing I received a call from an unexpected voice. It was from an adoptee whose adoption we handled more than 23 years ago. That “child” was now a hopeful adult, looking to connect with his birth mother.  I recalled (to myself) meeting his birth parents at their apartment in Tampa.  They were a sweet couple, looking to give their baby a wonderful home.  I remembered this placement well.

Nearing 25 years since our first private adoption placement, we are hearing from an increased number of adoptees reaching out to find their birth parents. Whether this increase is due to a growing interest in ancestry and personal history, open adoptions and adoption reunions filling our social media feeds, or a desire to build more family connections, many adoptees are reaching out to establish a more open relationship with their birth parents.

When I received that call from the adoptee, I initially felt excited and hopeful for him and for his birth mother, and for the opportunity they may have to connect with each other after all these years. But that initial excitement was followed by a wave of internal questions. Did the birth mother sign a consent to release her information to her child, should he be interested in finding her in adulthood? If the birth mother did not sign a consent to release information, would it be right to contact her after all these years if she did not initially express a wish to have an open or semi-open adoption? What if she had signed a release but her feelings had since changed?

I also thought of protecting her confidentiality and the life she was currently living. How would my letter impact her present life? Perhaps she created her own family after placement and did not wish to share the adoption with her partner or children.  By sending her a letter, would there be a risk of someone in her family picking up the mail and asking her about why she received a letter from a law firm, causing her to have to explain the situation to them?

If she had signed a release of information, I considered whether she may be in a different frame of mind from how she felt at the time of placement. Would she be prepared emotionally to begin direct communication with her adopted child? Could I be reopening old wounds by reaching out to her? On the other hand, with her child reaching adulthood, maybe she had been holding out hope that she would hear from him and contacting her may lead to a long-awaited reunion.

From the time we established our practice we have known that these reunions would be a possibility, but the reality is much more complicated than we could have anticipated. And the questions that come along with adoption reunions can create emotional and ethical challenges that all parties to the adoption must learn how to navigate.

Adoptions today are much more open than 20 years ago.  Thankfully, most current placements include direct sharing of contact information which allows birth and adoptive families to continue communication and sometimes visitation with each other over the years. This evolution toward continued contact may lead to reunions no longer being necessary in the future – a possibility that raises its own questions about how adoptions may change the picture of a “family” going forward.

And in the event you are wondering, how did my case turn out?  I was able to send a private message to the birth mother (thank you Facebook).  After several months she responded expressing her joy and excitement that her son wanted to find her and apologizing about the delay.  She took that  time to talk with all of her children and obtain their thoughts about a reunion.  Her  whole family was on board and wanted to take the next step.  These two families have reconnected in a journey to provide the best for their child.  I am not sure where things currently stand but am rooting for all of the laughs, tears, hugs, and love that we wish for in adoption reunions.

— Michelle M. Hausmann, Esq., attorney with Hausmann & Hickman, P.A. This blog was originally written to be shared on the Academy of Adoption & Assisted Reproduction Attorneys website.

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Working With Ethical Professionals Is Key To Adoption Success

The following article was originally published by the Academy of Adoption & Assisted Reproduction Attorneys (AAAA) and shared by Yahoo News. We felt it was important to share through our blog as well to highlight the importance of adoptive families researching the adoption professionals they are considering working with. Amy Hickman and Michelle Hausmann are members of AAAA, as well as Florida Bar Board Certified in Adoption which recognizes adoption attorneys’ special knowledge, skills, professionalism and ethics.  As Certified Adoption Attorneys, Amy and Michelle are experts in adoption law.

Stories of adoptions gone wrong like the one recently published in The New Yorker abound in the news today, but in reality, these cautionary tales are just that – a warning – and not the norm. Successful, ethical adoptions can and do take place every day. Working with one of the competent attorneys from AAAA can make your adoption one of them.

Every day in the United States and abroad children are placed for adoption into loving homes. These adoptions take place legally and they are done ethically. Unfortunately, these are not usually the stories that make the press. Instead, stories like “How an Adoption Broker Cashed In on Prospective Parents’ Dreams,” recently published in The New Yorker, detailing events that never should have happened, are the adoption stories that the public most often hear.

The attorneys of the non-profit organization, the Academy of Adoption and Assisted Reproduction Attorneys (“AAAA”), are dedicated to minimizing the number of adoption stories that end like the one described in The New Yorker, with prospective parents being defrauded by corrupt agencies or facilitators. Committed to the competent and ethical practice of adoption law, AAAA and its attorneys or “Fellows” advocate for laws and policies to protect the best interests of children, the legal status of families formed through adoption, and the rights of all interested parties. AAAA Fellows apply the law and best legal practices and have successfully helped thousands of clients through their family building journey. AAAA Fellows also represent thousands of birth parents to assure they are treated fairly and with dignity as they make the difficult decision to place a child for adoption.

The Academy of Adoption and Assisted Reproduction Attorneys is represented by over 500 attorneys from the United States and abroad who specialize in adoption law, assisted reproductive technology law (ART) or both. AAAA provides a credentialed presence in the law of family formation and is the largest professional organization of its type dedicated to advancing the security of children through permanent adoption, the protection of children through safe and secure foster care with appropriate permanency planning, and the recognition of intended parents as legal parents for those using modern medical technology to build families through assisted reproductive technology.

Admission to AAAA is a selective process that requires no less than five years of legal practice, at least 50 diverse adoption or assisted reproductive technology proceedings, a referral for admission by a current AAAA member, and rigorous review for high ethical standards and competency by the board of directors.

AAAA is committed to the finest in legal practice and to serving the adoption triad – children, birth families and adoptive families – with compassion and competency. While AAAA supports the exposure of unethical adoption practices in the press to educate the public, AAAA reminds all that ethical and competent adoption professionals should be highlighted and promoted to encourage the public to seek out those of the highest standards to assist in their adoption journey.

AAAA is headquartered in Greenwood, Indiana. For more information, visit us at

Media Contact:

Genie Miller Gillespie, Academy of Adoption & Assisted Reproduction Attorneys, (312) 332-6339,

SOURCE Academy of Adoption & Assisted Reproduction Attorneys

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Planning for the Hospital in an Adoption

Often throughout the adoption process, attention may be focused on establishing a relationship and communication between adoptive parents and birth parents, and planning for what that communication will look like after the adoption placement. But another important part of the process is considering what to expect during the birth and delivery at the hospital. Planning for what the hospital experience will look like for both the birth parents and adoptive parents can help make the experience a positive and meaningful part of the adoption process.  In the adoption arena this is often referred to as an “adoption birth plan.”

Planning for the Hospital as a Birth Parent

The hospital experience can include some mixed emotions for the birth parents. There may be a great deal of happiness and excitement about the baby’s birth, an increased feeling of connection to the adoptive parents, and the bittersweet feeling of envisioning your child’s future. It has been said that no greater gift can be bestowed than the gift of adoption. However, there also may be a bit of awkwardness when determining exactly who will be present at the hospital and when, coupled with anxiety and/or sadness due to the significant decision being made. Creating an adoption birth plan for the hospital prior to delivery can help manage some of the uncomfortable emotions and situations that may arise throughout the process. Consider what your preferences are for the following:

  • Who do you want to be at the hospital with you? Are you considering inviting your family to meet your baby, and have you discussed with them the level of involvement you would like from them at the hospital? Consider setting boundaries and guidelines about what topics you feel comfortable discussing with them while at the hospital, and what kind of interactions you are comfortable with (taking pictures with the baby, having them meet the adoptive parents, etc.)
  • How much interaction would you like with the adoptive parents? Consider if you will want them to be in the actual delivery room, at the hospital by your side throughout the experience, or if there are times when you would prefer to be alone (with or without the baby). How will you communicate to them if your preferences change during the process? The adoptive parents may be eager to be present, but it is also important to find a balance that will be best for everyone and honor the emotions that are likely to surface throughout the process.
  • How much interaction with the baby are you planning to have? How much time would you like to spend alone with your baby? Although this may change in the moment, taking time to reflect on your needs and preferences before the delivery may help you communicate what you are feeling, and what you may need, when you are at the hospital. Also consider what type of mementos you may want from the hospital, including photos, footprints, etc.

Considerations for Adoptive Parents

The idea of going to the hospital can be as exciting as it is daunting for adoptive parents. You will likely have many questions about when you are permitted to go to the hospital, where you will be able to stay, and when you may spend time with the birth mother and the baby. Planning ahead can alleviate some of your anxiety throughout the process.

  • Speaking with your attorney is an essential part of planning for the hospital. Your attorney can provide guidance regarding what to expect, estimated timelines, what documentation you may need, as well as their feedback regarding how the process has worked for adoptive parents in the past.
  • If you have regular contact with the birth mother, talk to her about what contact she would like from you at the hospital. You may be very excited and anxious to see her and the baby, but this is a complex situation for her emotionally – ensure she knows that you respect her boundaries and privacy, and support her needs during this time. Working with your attorney to communicate and create a plan together with the birth mother may be helpful for ensuring everyone is comfortable voicing their own needs and finding a plan that everyone is on board with.
  • Start planning what you will need to bring with you to the hospital, including what you may need if you are permitted to stay. If you are adopting a child in another state, plan to stay in the adopted child’s state until you are legally approved to return to your home state. Your attorney can provide guidance on estimated processing times which can help you when planning what you will need to pack.

Now more than ever, there are additional factors to consider with current, frequent changes in hospital policies regarding visitors and limits on how many individuals can visit hospital patients. All of these can factor into your experience, and working with the attorney handling the adoption can help you establish a plan to assist everyone in feeling supported throughout the adoption process at the hospital.

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Caring for your Mental Health After Adoption: Considerations for Birth Parents

Placing a baby for adoption can create a whirlwind of emotions. Many of these emotions can be positive, including the hope for a better life for your child, or joy from the act of helping an adoptive couple become parents for the first time. But the adoption process also involves heavier emotions including grief, loss, and possibly loneliness or frustration from feeling that others in your life may be unable to relate to how you are feeling or provide the emotional support that you need. These emotions often can take a toll on a birth parent’s mental health, and prioritizing care for your mental health after adoption can be a significant part of the healing process following the adoption placement.

There are many potential methods for caring for your mental health after placing a baby for adoption. Here are a few options you may want to consider:

Take time off from work or school if needed and possible. Allowing yourself time to rest and recover not only from the pregnancy and birth, but also from the adoption process, can be essential to healing both physically and emotionally.

Seek support from friends or family. When we are grieving, sometimes we feel pressured to put on a brave face for our families, children, and partners. And sometimes we are tempted to isolate ourselves and shut out the rest of the world. If no one is around to ask us about how we are feeling, then we don’t need to acknowledge those feelings exist, right? But friends and family can also provide the support that we need to heal, and to remind us of the things that bring us happiness and peace in a time when things may feel anything but peaceful. And although friends and family may not always know what to say to comfort us, sometimes what we need from them is simply someone to sit with us while we process and feel our own emotions, and to remind us we are not alone.

Consider attending therapy. Sometimes a birth mother may need more support than what friends and family are able to give, or maybe you are seeking guidance on how to approach the overwhelming emotions you are feeling. A therapist or counselor can help you process the grief, loss, relief, and bittersweet emotions that you may experience after placing your child for adoption, as well as provide education on the stages of grief and how to cope with each stage. A therapist can help you navigate what you are feeling and find healthy ways to express it.

Join a support group. Whether it is a local grief group that meets in person once per week to share experiences about the grieving process, or a private online group in which birth parents post how they are feeling and seek advice from others, support groups can provide a comforting space to put a voice to how you are feeling and connect with others with shared experiences. Groups can also reassure birth parents that they are not alone, and although their experience is unique, they can find common ground and seek support and advice from others who have also placed a child for adoption.

Practice self-care. When we are busy, or focused on caring for others, we often put ourselves on the back burner. But when you are coping with placing a baby for adoption, taking care of yourself is essential. Take time to explore creative outlets to express your emotions, listen to music, and spend time outdoors. Maybe explore a new hobby, or take a trip to a place you’ve always wanted to visit.

However you choose to proceed after placement, taking care of your mental health is an essential part of adoption. Each birth parent’s needs are unique, and this list does not include all options for caring for your mental health as a birth parent, but may provide some guidance in your healing process.