Adopting a child can be a very complicated and confusing ordeal, if you don’t find a way to keep all your thoughts and progress straight. A great analogy comes to mind whenever I think of the adoption process – you’ve got to be prepared like an astronaut. That’s because, like astronauts, there’s tons of things a person or couple needs to remember and keep it at hand all the time. So, think like an astronaut, because they have very little room for error and have only one goal in mind – a successful (adoption) mission.
Adoptive parents should keep a preparedness checklist of procedures, statuses, and milestones, just like astronauts who must stay mission-focused! Think of your checklist as a tether to the bundle at the end of your mission.
The Adoption Mission Control Checklist
We’ve compiled our checklist based on several adoption information websites on the Internet:
- Summary of New Mexico state adoption laws:
- When may consent for adoption be signed: 48 hours after birth.
- Time to revoke adoption consent: Irrevocable.
- Birth Father Registry: Yes.
- Are ads okay: Yes.
- Father pre-birth consent: No.
- Time to finalize adoption: 4-7 months.
- Do medical expenses of birthmother need to be paid: Yes.
- Do living expenses of birthmother need to be paid: Yes, payments must be made to third party, not to birthmother.
- Is your child from another country?
- If so, you’ll need to complete the federal Petition to Classify Orphan as an Immediate Relative form I-600A. (Make sure you use the I-600A form dated 12/23/16 as no prior editions are accepted. Forms with empty fields will be rejected. The filing fee is $775. Biometric fee of $85 for each adult applies.)
- Mail form I-600A.
- Schedule a fingerprint appointment date.
- You get a child/baby referral:
- Get your baby/child’s family history and medical reports.
- Find out their sleeping and eating habits.
- Make a schedule of their daily routine.
- Take notes on their developmental state and behaviors.
- Make a list of people to call when you get referral news:
- Family and friends that will help take care of affairs when you are gone.
- Work or school to plan absence time.
- Any last-minute appointments to make before travel, if necessary.
- Keep a running list of potential names for your child:
- Have a few extra name options, because sometimes a name doesn’t match the face or personality.
- Personal preparation:
- Make the most of your time before a child comes to your home.
- Read any parenting books you might have or plan to get.
- Give your home a thorough cleaning, so you can focus on them instead when you all get
- Make yourself some pre-made dinners that can last you a week or two, such as burritos, lasagna, casserole, etc.
- Legal preparation:
- Put your child on your health insurance policy.
- Make modifications to your life insurance policies or income tax withholdings to reflect your new child as a beneficiary or dependent.
- Find a good pediatrician for your new child.
- Find out what school options are available and enroll them, unless you plan to homeschool them.
- List of things to do in child’s native country:
- Take photos of their home city, the hospital where they were delivered, and the orphanage and school they may have attended.
- Buy some cultural artifacts or souvenirs from their native country.
- Pick up a history book about their hometown or country, and newspaper on the day of their arrival as a memento.
- Travel Packing Checklist:
- Pack appropriate clothing items for yourself, if traveling to a foreign climate.
- Pack presents for your first meeting with your new child.
- Pack new clothing for your child’s travel.
- Pack diapers (if it’s a newborn), baby wipes, formula mix and food items.
Contact a Las Cruces Adoption Attorney at Sutherland Law Firm, LLC
Are you planning to adopt a child? If so, there are several important ways a Las Cruces Adoption Attorney at Sutherland Law Firm, LLC can help your adoption process run smoothly and successfully. Call (505) 207-5172 or email our firm.