Parents that adopt children give a life to a child that would otherwise not happen and the rewards can be great. However, the process of completing a planned adoption can be long and expensive, taking a toll on many an adoptive parent. Many Houston area families know this all too well.
Much is heard about the complications imposed by foreign governments when American citizens try to adopt a child overseas. However, it is not always the foreign country that impedes the process. Because multiple United States government agencies are involved in an international adoption, there can be delays and repetitive steps, such as background checks by different agencies that leave children sitting in orphanages for extended periods of time waiting to come to their new homes. A recent news article reported that a Louisiana senator has introduced new legislation, known as Children in Families First or CHIFF, to overhaul our government’s handling of foreign adoptions.
The bill seeks to move ultimate responsibility for such adoptions from the U.S. State Department to the Department of Immigration. The goal is to streamline the process, reducing costs and the time needed to complete adoptions and put children into homes sooner. Currently, the average adoption of a foreign child takes three years and costs $28,000 to fully process through our government. One Texas family that had originally filed for adoption of a boy in Haiti three years ago recently went to bring him home to the United States but was forced to return without him due to yet another delay related to Unites States policies.
Such adoption issues are complex and difficult on families. Many factors are at play in both countries. If you are seeking to adopt a child, working with an adoption attorney may be helpful for you to understand the process.
Source: ABC KVUE.com, “Defenders Update: Legislation filed to fix adoption process,” Andy Pierrotti, September 19, 2013