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How to Adopt a Child in New York

How to Adopt a Child in New York

Adopting a child is one of the biggest decisions an adult can make. The positive impact this can have on a child’s life cannot be overstated. While it is rewarding for the child and your family, finalizing an adoption takes significant time, effort, and patience. Because a child’s well-being is at stake, the adoption process is extensive and complicated.

Adoption is a legal process, so to reach a successful conclusion, you want an experienced adoption attorney to guide you each step of the way, whether you choose to complete the adoption privately or through an adoption agency. This includes submission of the multitude of paperwork involved throughout the process.

Types of Adoption

There are three forms of adoption in New York:

  • Agency adoption: Prospective adoptive parents work with an agency to select a child.
  • Uncontested adoption: The adoptive parents and the child’s biological family are in agreement regarding the terms of the adoption and the termination of parental rights.
  • Contested adoption: In these cases, the biological parents object to the adoption. Adoptive parents will need to work with an attorney to illustrate to the court why they are the best choice for the child.

Adoption Procedure in NYC

The New York State Office of Children and Family Services says it can take around six months from your initial application to when a child is placed in your home, and up to a year after that for adoption finalization.  If you intend to utilize the New York State Adoption Service or one of the many other NYC adoption agencies, once you make your selection, your attorney will submit an application, medical history, and complete background check. You will then meet with agency staff at your home so they can ensure you can handle the addition to your residence and family.

Following an agency training session, you will work with a caseworker to select the child you wish to adopt. After you visit with the child, they are placed in your home, and the caseworker will provide temporary outside supervision. If you are eligible for adoption subsidies for a handicapped child or one determined to be hard to place, you and your attorney will work with the agency to secure that recurring compensation. Your lawyer can then submit an adoption petition to finalize the process in court.

Contact a Brooklyn Adoption Lawyer

Whichever route you choose for your adoption, Goldberg Sager & Associates is prepared to help and shoulder the significant administrative burden as you prepare for the arrival of a new family member. Call a New York City family law attorney at 718-514-9516 for a free consultation.


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  • Brooklyn Office
    1628 Kings Highway at East 17th Street
    Brooklyn, New York 11229
    Phone: 718-645-6677