If you have ever entered into a business transaction of any kind you know that it can be very convoluted. The legal requirements to close any deal are myriad and daunting, which is why you hear the advice, “be sure to read the fine print.” And in addition, you might do well to have an experienced attorney look things over.
Adoption is very much a transaction, too. The purpose of going through the legal maze is not material gain, but the creation of a loving family. But that doesn’t remove the hurdles to reaching the finish line. And it may not matter whether you are a Pennsylvania couple pursuing an adoption within the United States or from overseas.
As with any legal endeavor, it’s important to weigh the various pros and cons so that you can feel confident that you have made choices that best suit your situation. And to that end, here are some observations inspired by a post offered up on the website About.com. The views are not comprehensive, but do seem to represent a good place to start.
At a general level, significant issues that are likely to weigh on a decision about adoption are cost, travel and the availability of adoptable children.
In the context of cost, a couple is likely to find that international adoption is more expensive. But fees are usually known, so it makes it possible to make adequate plans to raise the necessary funds.
Domestic adoptions are often less expensive, but each state has its own legal requirements that may pose challenges for adoptions from the state’s foster care system. If a private adoption is being considered, fees will depend on roles played by private agencies and attorneys. The child’s country of origin might affect the cost. Or, there may be provisions expected to pay for the expectant mother’s care.
If you are looking overseas, you will likely need to travel to the child’s country and stay there for some extended period of time. You may also be required to make the trip more than once. The same might not hold true for a domestic adoption, even if it is an interstate transaction.
If adopting an infant is a priority for you domestic adoption might be the way to go. International adoptions tend to take longer for many reasons, making it impossible to arrange a newborn placement.