Adoption is a one of the biggest decisions of life.  It is a life-changing event for the adoptive parents, the child, and for the entire family.  Today, many couples have been considering adoption. With the ever-evolving process and procedures, adopting a child these days have been far easy and approachable, unlike past years.  With the laws and policies, will intact, the Adoption process and procedures followed in India are set out by the Central Adoption Resources Agency (CARA) and has fixed fee rates.

Here is a step-wise guideline about the adoption process and the procedures involved in India.

1. Contacting the registered adoption placement agencies of the state

Adoptive parents have to contact a Central Adoption Resource Agency (CRCA) or an Adoption Coordinating Agency (ACA) of the state they reside in or in their home state. Physical and mental fitness, emotional stability, and financial capability are the prerequisites for prospective adoptive parents.  They have to fill in a detailed form mentioning the specification of the gender if any, along with submission of the other necessary supporting documents.  The concerned authority does the first round of counselling to understand the mindsets of the couple.

2. The Home Study

A detailed assessment of the capability of the prospective parents to take charge of an adopted child follows by way of a home study by a social worker.  The adoption agency prepares a report about the details of the home study and saves it for future references.  It has a validity time.

3. The search for the right match

The adoption agency finds a suitable child for the family keeping in view the detailed information and the specification mentioned by the prospective adoptive parents.  The process of matching may take a long time most of the time.

4. The first meet of the child and the adoptive parents

The adoption agency then informs the prospective adoptive parents about the child and shows the child. The agency also furnishes the medical examination details of the child.  The parents have the right to take the child for a general health check-up.

5. Placement of the child into foster care

The prospective parents and the agency sign a foster care agreement and then the agency hand over the child to the parents. The parents are now in charge of the child.

6. Filing of the petition for adoption

The agency lawyer files an adoption petition in the court on behalf of the couple, depending on the law under which the adoption will take place.

7. The Adoption Proceedings

The agency representative and the parents register the adoption deed at the Registrars as a proof of completion of the adoption.

Besides the above, following the approved legal route, and the formalities are the only right way. Hence approaching a registered adoption agency is important.  Approaching the unlicensed orphanages or hospitals or doctors or social workers is illegal and can land the adoptive parents into great trouble.  A legal declaration of a child for adoption is a requisite.

But before proceeding, be sure about your decision on adoption.  Also, arm yourself with the information about the uncertainties that come with adoption.

My book, ‘Over the Rainbow‘ can give you a glimpse of an adoption journey.

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