those who used a private attorney/adoption. networking to find your own situation - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 15 Old 08-26-2009, 03:10 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I was wondering for you families that used a private attorney for your adoption if you would mind giving me an estimate of what it cost. (feel free to pm if you'd like to keep it private)

DH and I are considering going the private adoption route. We are currently "doing" the foster to adopt program for our state. I say that because the process is incredibly slow, it has been close to a yr and we have yet to finish our homestudy....thank you CA budget crisis (oh our county does not accept private homestudies so we must go thru the state agency for our homestudy if we want to do their foster/adopt program.

That being said DH and I are considering getting a private homestudy (we pay) and basically network to find our own adoption situation. We have had some things line up currently that could possibly lead to adoption contacts for our familiy that would not involve birthmother expenses, basically either a newborn child whose birth parent decides to place or one that does not need expenses paid. Sorry im being vague, but basically we would only be looking at attorney fees/legal fees, travel.

Can you give me a rough estimate? I tried contacting several attorneys in our area that specialize in adoption. However, I either need to come in for a consulation or they were like "hey we can help find a baby, its only $40,000. You have to have an attorney or agency network you" We know that it'll be a lot of work to network ourselves but like I said we might have a way (contacts) to be presented to perspective birth parents.
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#2 of 15 Old 08-26-2009, 03:28 AM
 
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We live in Arizona. There is one adoption attorney in our city. He is wonderful. We were a baby born situation so maybe that made it cheaper. I've heard of attorneys charging so that your total expenses are around $11,000--the amount of the tax credit you can get back from the feds.

attorney fees (ours and bmom's) $3,000
homestudy $1,000
parentprofiles.com $600
other advertising $200
800 number $30

There were other small misc. expenses like fingerprints. We chose to give birthmom $1,000 expenses, she did not ask for them. There was another $1,000 in expenses, but I'm not remembering what. Oh yeah, post placement visits were a few hundred. Don't remember what else. Essentially, we had a really inexpensive adoption.

I sent letters to obstetricians around the state (search through here and you'll find my detailed info.) Mailed them on August 5. FIVE DAYS later we were matched with a baby born situation. Our finalization was about 3 months later.

Created an instant family (7/89 and 5/91) in 1997. Made a baby boy 12/05 adopted a baby girl 8/08. Ask me about tandem adoptive nursing. Now living as gluten, dairy, cane sugar, and tomato free vegetarians. Homeschooling and loving it.

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#3 of 15 Old 08-26-2009, 03:43 AM - Thread Starter
 
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mybabysmamam...... I think your the MDC mama that Im thinking of, you posted about your adoption experience which got us thinking about us networking ourselves. We are "adoption dumb" even after a yr of seriously being in the adoption world so any suggestions would be greatly helpful.
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#4 of 15 Old 08-26-2009, 12:43 PM
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We're in CA. We've hired an adoption attorney to help us find a match. He charges a flat $7500. But he also does the legal work for people who identify a birthmother on their own. Under those circumstances, he charges $350 per hour and estimates a total fee of between $2100 and $3500 (assuming the adoption is uncontested).

Feel free to PM me if you want his name and contact info.

HTH,
Catherine
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#5 of 15 Old 08-26-2009, 02:20 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luv-my-boys View Post
mybabysmamam...... I think your the MDC mama that Im thinking of, you posted about your adoption experience which got us thinking about us networking ourselves. We are "adoption dumb" even after a yr of seriously being in the adoption world so any suggestions would be greatly helpful.
I'd highly recommend using parentprofiles.com. Oops. Just occurred to me that you're in California and I think you can't do that.I think it's because they don't allow gay couples so CA says they're discriminatory. So, find an online profile place you CAN do. Not only does this let emoms read your profile, it also gives you a site where you can refer to in all your advertising. You can advertise in newspapers. I'd go with university papers, though that does get expensive. www.craigslist.com is free so advertise there with your profile link. Send letters to everyone you know plus obstetricians, maternity homes, possibly hospital social workers--though I'd call them first to see if they can facilitate matching. Also, google adoption situations. Try adoption situations professional and see if you get anything different.

Because we had such good luck finding our own baby, everyone wants to know how we did it. I think what I will do, when I have time, is start a thread about it. I'll detail what we did and what we know. Everyone else can list their experience. Then we can just bump it for other people to see. Like I said, that'll be when I can do it. I'm typing this with a stolen moment so I'll have to wait until later.

Let me know if you've got specific questions.

Created an instant family (7/89 and 5/91) in 1997. Made a baby boy 12/05 adopted a baby girl 8/08. Ask me about tandem adoptive nursing. Now living as gluten, dairy, cane sugar, and tomato free vegetarians. Homeschooling and loving it.

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#6 of 15 Old 08-26-2009, 04:18 PM
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Actually advertising for an adoption is illegal in CA unless you are a licensed agency. I believe that is why parent profiles won't host profiles for people living in CA. So you may wish to consult an attorney before putting a profile online or placing any newspaper ads. (Ours has a particular opinion on the way the statute is written and how it is enforced. But I'd suggest getting your own legal advice straight from an attorney on this.)

Catherine
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#7 of 15 Old 08-26-2009, 05:01 PM
 
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Are you totally ready to give up on foster-adopting? I am in CA too and I know how bad things have gotten with the budget cuts. The social workers are so bogged down with cases that it is hard for them to remember who is who at this point. We decided that the only way to make our case a priority was to be the politely "squeaky wheel." I asked our worker if it would be ok if I called her to check in weekly and she said it was, so I have. It has definitely worked to our benefit! We are on very good terms now with our worker and she has kept us in the loop about cuts in the program that are coming up and she has even finished our homestudy earlier than planned because she found out that there is going to be another cut coming in a few weeks.

If you want to keep going the fost-adopt route, find ways to make your family stand out. Work on your family profile book, join the foster families support group, volunteer, and above all - talk to your worker frequently.

Good luck, either way!

A bit of this, a bit of that... a mish-mash quilt of a mama to Oliver (2/3/05) and Lilah (2/5/07) and Silas (9/8/09) :
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#8 of 15 Old 08-27-2009, 04:28 AM
 
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We are in CA, and were told to expect between $2500 and $5000 in attorney's fees just to handle the legal side of the adoption, not the networking to match with an expectant mom. That is for a pretty straightforward situation. If it gets complicated and involves more work, obviously the cost would increase.
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#9 of 15 Old 08-28-2009, 12:24 AM
 
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ours was interstate (baby in washington and us in tx). we paid about 6k to the lawyer, 2k to the birth mother's lawyer, 2k for the homestudy and postplacement visit, and airfare and motel stay. there were other paperwork charges and stuff, but nothing else over $100

Mama to Jet 6/05, Marvel 8/06 and Cash and Fox 2/09
Expecting Ada Marianne 11/14
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#10 of 15 Old 09-07-2009, 08:30 PM
 
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we had a private attorney adoption with an amazing attorney here in so cal. let me know if you'd like their name. we had a contact leading to birthmom, so brought our own match to the attorney, and it ended up costing somewhere between 11-14,000 including some medical costs for birthmom and all attorney costs...we're not finalized yet so still paying chunks for them. anyways, pretty close to the tax credit and we had an amazingly pleasant experience. we will definitely use the same attorneys for our next adoption! feel free to pm me if you want more specifics! i also just learned of a great free organization to get matched, so i can give you info on that too if you're interested!

mom to 2 pooches, one wild and awesome little boy kid.gif who joined our family through the miracle of adoption, and expecting 2 miracle babies in spring 2013 after 7 years of ttc!belly.gif

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#11 of 15 Old 09-10-2009, 10:59 PM
 
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have you considered a 'finding' or 'matching' agency like Lifetime Adoption?
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#13 of 15 Old 10-16-2012, 07:42 PM
 
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Ours was guardianship first, so we didn't need a homestudy thankfully. Overall our adoption (identified since we had the guardianship first, so no networking involved) was about 8k.

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#14 of 15 Old 11-23-2012, 07:56 PM
 
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In TX, we are in a private adoption situation and the attorney we have hired is charging $3500 flat for the TPR affidavit, service by publication for the unknown father, legal fees, home evaluation, living wills, medical power of attorney, etc. But he's a gem. Most other attorneys were quoting $5-7,000.

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#15 of 15 Old 11-27-2012, 04:19 PM
 
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The lawyer we are using for our foster-to-adopt case makes most of his money doing private infant adoptions. I think it would cost under 10k for the full-service deal from him - his legal services, his baby-finding services, his homestudy etc. Expenses for the expectant mother would be on top of that. In this state, at least, going through a private lawyer looks to be about the same cost as going through an agency. 

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