Do I Have to Live in the Same State as the Adoptive Parents?

The simple answer is no, but it takes some explanation. If the baby will be born in one state and be adopted by parents from another state, permission to leave one state and enter the other needs to be provided. That approval comes from the Interstate Compact on the Placement on Children (ICPC).

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ICPC will review documents, including but not limited to:

  • Information on you and the birth father
  • Medical history for the baby
  • Adoption homestudy for the adopting family
  • Child abuse and criminal clearances for the adopting family
  • How you and the adopting parent(s) came to know one another
  • Financial assistance provided to you (state regulated)

ICPC in the state where the baby was born has to approve the placement. They then send the paperwork to the ICPC office in the state where the adopting parent(s) reside. Once the placement is approved, the original state is notified. The adopting parent(s) are then given permission to come back to their home state of residence with the baby.

When you are making your adoption plan you should consult with a local adoption attorney or adoption agency to review your state laws, including the ways you can locate an adoptive family in or out of your state.

Should you want an open adoption, where you can see your child after they are placed in the adoptive family, consideration should be given as to the adoptive family’s willingness and ability to bring the child to see you, or to help you come to their home state to see your child. Many birth parents who want an open adoption, choose a family who lives within close proximity or are willing to travel.

To locate an adoption agency or adoption attorney, visit our directory of professionals.

Other resources:

National Foster Care and Adoption Agencies

American Academy of Adoption Attorneys

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