Growing a family through adoption is rewarding on many levels. Parents can pursue domestic or international adoption through a public or private agency. Nevertheless, some seek other forms of domestic adoption known as private or independent adoption.
This is different than going through a domestic or international adoption agency that guides the family through the process, yet it offers many benefits:
- Control: Many parents cite control over the whole process as the strongest argument for an independent adoption. Many believe that it minimizes the chances of the birth parent or family changing their mind and not offering the child for adoption. While some legal guidelines exist, adoptive and birth parents create their own arrangements.
- Safety: It avoids the risk of dealing with unscrupulous or exploitive international agencies that may not have the child’s or family’s best interests in mind.
- Age: The child is usually adopted soon after birth.
- Direct contact: Adoptive parents often like having direct contact with the birth mother, and the child and parents may maintain ongoing relationships with the birth family.
- Benefits for the birth parent: The birth parent generally has their health expenses, legal fees, cost of placement and related expenses (a judge will review these) paid by the adoptive family. The exchange of money, gifts or favors is illegal in Kentucky.
- A more streamlined process: Adoption agencies and government offices will often require extensive paperwork, long waits, classes, travel to pick up the child and other commitments.
Outside help is often still needed
The Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services handles adoption applications, petitions and placement, so many families also use a family law attorney who handles adoption here in Kentucky. These legal professionals can help families with all the necessary legal documents and arrangements.