How to Afford Your Adoption

At ANLC, we realize that paying for your adoption is a top concern for many hopeful Adoptive Parents. Many have exhausted their resources after paying the high costs of fertility treatments and others wish to tap into available resources to keep from having to utilize savings/securities.

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Whatever your situation, you may wish to consider:

1. Loans

You may not like the idea of borrowing money for an adoption, but sometimes a loan may be a good option and you may be able to pay it back quickly once you receive a tax credit or are reimbursed by your employer or the military.

  • Unsecured Loan (no collateral): Most adoption loans are unsecured loans. This type of loan has a fixed rate and term. Terms are usually 5, 6 or 7 years and interest rates vary depending on the term of the loan and the borrower’s credit rating.
  • Secured Loan (collateral): Secured loans will use auto equity, real estate equity (home equity loan) or a savings account as collateral. Secured loans typically offer a lower interest rate than that of unsecured loans.
  • Third Party Loan: A third party loan is where another person takes out a loan on your behalf. This may be an option for anyone with credit challenges or a lower credit score. You are not on the loan and the third party is 100% responsible for the loan, but some banks will set up the account so that you make the payments directly. This type of loan will show up on the credit report of the third party.
  • Existing Loan/Lenders: If you have an existing account/relationship with a local bank or credit union, this may assist you in obtaining a loan, especially if you have a good payment history. Contact your local bank or credit union today to see what financing options may be available to you.
  • 401k/Loan Disbursement: Some Adopting Families decide to take out a loan against their 401k. Although this may take a little longer to obtain funds, they choose this option because the interest rates are typically lower than traditional loans. If this is something you wish to consider, you will need to speak with your plan administrator (usually your HR Department).

Below are some adoption loan providers that may provide you with additional information.

*Adoption Network Law Center’s representation of Clients is strictly limited to adoption services. Adoption Network Law Center is not a lender, nor does it represent you in regards to any loan. Adoption Network Law Center does not receive any fees or commissions from any vendor of financial services.

America’s Christian Credit Union

America’s Christian Credit Union (ACCU) is well known for its passion for supporting the work of those committed to adoption. ACCU offers unsecured, secured, third party loans or a combination of secured and unsecured loans. To learn more and apply, CLICK HERE and follow all instructions.


Prosper Healthcare Lending (PHL) may be able to assist you with paperless, unsecured loans for financing your expenses associated with an adoption. They offer two unsecured loan programs.To learn more about the programs and to apply, CLICK HERE and follow all instructions.


Lightstream offers unsecured loans for medical or adoption expenses. To learn more and apply, CLICK HERE and follow all instructions.

2. Adoption Tax Credit

You may be eligible for a nonrefundable tax credit for qualified adoption expenses. The credit may be reduced or eliminated based on your modified adjusted gross income (MAGI) and there may be an income exclusion for employer provided adoption assistance. Please consult with your tax professional to see if you would qualify for the credit.

3. Employer Adoption Benefits

Many employers today provide adoption benefits that may include financial assistance as well as paid/unpaid leave. Employers may also provide adoption education, offer support networks and incorporate adoption into services provided by their employee assistance program. Check with your HR Department or review your employee benefits.

4. Military Adoption Benefits

Active duty military families may receive a financial reimbursement for certain qualified adoption expenses and may also be eligible for adoption leave and receive health care benefits for their child before the adoption is final.

5. Fundraising/Crowdfunding

Many families have pursued fundraising for their adoption costs. While many still turn to traditional fundraising methods, many families today utilize crowdfunding sites such as GoFundMe and AdoptTogether to share their stories online and attract support for their adoption journeys.

6. Grants

There may be grants available to you if you have a completed home study. These grants are intended to allow the recipient to complete their adoption, they are not intended as adoption start-up money and may not be used to reimburse for past expenses. To learn more and see if you qualify, please visit:

  • Gift of Adoption
    Adoption assistance grants range from $1,000 to $7,500 with the average grant award of $3,500.
  • Help Us Adopt
    Help Us Adopt awards a total of $100,000 per grant cycle. Each grant award is between $500-$15,000.
  • National Adoption Foundation
    The National Adoption Foundation grants can range from $500 to $2,000.
  • A Child Waits Foundation
    A Child Waits Foundation accepts applications from anyone adopting internationally. Grant amounts are based on several factors, but will usually not exceed $7,000.
  • State assistance
    Just enter the name of your state, and this resource will tell you the extent to which your specific state covers adoption fees.

In addition to the above grants, there may be grants available based on need, religious affiliation, status, etc.

7. Foster Care

Foster care adoption will cost Adopting Parents little to no money. Public adoption is run through the government and is funded largely on taxpayer money.

  • Most of the children in the public welfare system are children who have been taken away from their families as a result of abuse or neglect, or are children with special needs.
  • These extenuating circumstances, and the fact that the child must be in the system for six months before adoption in a majority of cases, tend to ensure that the child will rarely be a newborn, but will often be a little older.

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