Good things take time. And as with so many significant events in our lives, the adoption of a child takes an investment in time and love.

A home study is the first step

The first step in any adoption process is to obtain a home study, which is a report that approves a family to adopt. This process can take several months to complete, depending on the type of adoption. Once the social worker has completed the home study, the report is sent to a placement agency of the adoptive family’s choosing for the placement of a child. The placement agency then matches an adoptive family with a child. The wait time and placement fee will vary depending on the placement agency. Once a child has been placed in an adoptive home, a social worker monitors the placement to ensure that both the family and the child are adjusting and transitioning well during the post-placement period. At the finalization, the child becomes the permanent and legally adopted child of the adoptive parents.

The following gives you a general outline of the adoption process.

  1. Contact the Social Services secretary at AGAPE of North Alabama at 256-859-4481 for informational packets and forms.
  2. Return the completed forms to our offices with your application fee of $200.
  3. You will be contacted by our staff to plan your home study when your forms have been reviewed and approved by AGAPE and the State of Alabama.
  4. All states require home studies for adoptive families. A home study consists of family interviews in the home and in AGAPE’s offices as well as:
    • verification of marriage
    • criminal background checks
    • verification of financial stability
    • personal references
    • training on adoption and other issues
  5. Birth parents may choose to meet prospective adoptive parents in open domestic adoptions.
  6. Eventually, a court finalizes each adoption. The adoptive family selects their own attorney to help finalize the legal process on their behalf.
  7. In addition to the $200, there are other fees charged by AGAPE. Based upon the individual circumstances/demands of each adoption, information about those fees will be shared with you during the adoption process.