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  #1  
Old 02-22-2006, 11:29 AM
queenjane queenjane is offline
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How do you adopt a child from another state?

I attended an orientation for a private agency last night. I am located in Michigan. Most waiting children here are placed through private agencies that have a contract with the state. I assumed that once i had an approved homestudy with whatever agency i decide to go with, that the homestudy could be used for any waiting child in the US. I assumed that the waiting child's state would reimburse my agency for the cost of the homestudy (and if it were a MI child, the state of MI would pay for it.) Either way, the agency gets paid, right?

I asked, at the meeting, if i would get a copy of my homestudy (answer was yes), i then asked if they would send it to children in other states....i was told that they feel more responsibility to the children in our own state, and that *since they contract with the state of MI* that homestudy could not be used for out-of-state children unless i paid for the homestudy upfront.

I am not sure if that is the case with all the other private placing agencies that work with the state, or just this one, so i guess i'll call around. But i get the feeling the agencies want to place their OWN kids with you (which i totally understand), but i want to find the RIGHT kid, no matter which agency or state. Seems a shame that i can only consider kids in my state, esp since i live so close to Ohio (and there are a couple of kids on the Ohio list i'd like to at least inquire about.) I was told last night that they don't go looking for other kids who need homes, there are plenty right here. It just seemed kind of an outdated way of looking at adoption.

So, is this experience typical? Am i only eligible for MI kids unless i pay for the homestudy? I dont want to do that (can't really afford it anyway), and since i am apparently looking for the exact type of kid that needs a home around here (male, over 8, any race)i'll likely be matched with a MI kid anyway. But i like to keep my options open yknow?

Katherine
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  #2  
Old 02-22-2006, 01:11 PM
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Peggy Peggy is offline
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typical

It is typical for the agency to want you to work within their state first. There are many children that are not on the website or in the books and if your agency is good, they will work to ensure a proper match. My agency requested you stay within the state for the first year, and then would look in bordering states. If you wanted to look throughout the US, you can work directly with your state social services, and contact other state social services on your own. It is a lot more work. Also when working with other states, the children presented are often (not always) the more hard to place children.
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  #3  
Old 02-23-2006, 11:13 AM
queenjane queenjane is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Peggy
My agency requested you stay within the state for the first year, and then would look in bordering states. If you wanted to look throughout the US, you can work directly with your state social services, and contact other state social services on your own. It is a lot more work. Also when working with other states, the children presented are often (not always) the more hard to place children.

I guess i just think its a shame that a child would have to wait a year for a family, just because he is in another state. It shouldnt matter *where* the child is located, if the child and family are an appropriate match.

I was told by my potential agency that i *could not* use the homestudy for a child in another state unless i paid for it. That just doesnt seem right to me. Esp. since a child living in, say, Ohio could live physically closer to me than some children living in Michigan (my own state)...i know i will probably find a good match here in my own state, but there are a couple of kids on other photolistings that i would at least like the *option* of inquiring about.


Katherine
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Old 02-23-2006, 11:58 AM
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Matches

It can be frustrating. But sometimes it is better for the child to not live so close to their original home. My daughter was from the other end of my state, and i believe it was planned that way for her safety. Also later on when dealing with health insurance, and subsidies, keeping within one state is easier.
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  #5  
Old 03-15-2006, 10:44 PM
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Trenched Trenched is offline
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Yeah, I have to say that I wouldn't personally recommend adopting from other state. We did, & we would not do it again. I'd say that you should only do it if (1) you have plenty of expendable income for travel, (2) you have plenty of expendable income for doctor / therapy appointments during the months that Medicaid is not yet transferred, & (3) you have infinite patience to wait. Things often go askew from the original plan, & it is excrutiating to wait. (We waited 9 months from the time we 1st met our daughters to the time we got to see them again. We've now had them for 15 months & still haven't even been able to file with the courts for adoption.) I realize that some situations go more smoothly...& that theoretically there shouldn't be all of these barriers, but theory & reality are two different things. If you decide to go ahead & look out of state, make sure you are fully prepared. Good luck!
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  #6  
Old 03-17-2006, 08:26 PM
Late Bloomer Late Bloomer is offline
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Katherine,
We had a very good experience adopting from another state, but I should add that we tried in our own state for a couple years first. Our state's childrens services were such a mess that we almost gave up. We finally found a worker who was willing to help, though, when he realized there were no in-state situations right for us. We found our out-of-state child at AdoptUSKids.com, and things worked out great.
L.B.
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  #7  
Old 05-21-2006, 10:45 AM
queenjane queenjane is offline
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Just wanted to update my situation in case it helps someone else out with this issue. I ended up choosing a different agency, one i felt more comfortable with. I didnt ask about adopting from out of state at the first class, because i had such a negative response to it from the first agency, and because i was the only adopting parent in the class, the rest were there for foster care.

But when i talked to my adoption worker, she said *yes* her agency will place kids from out of state, and its because they have something called an interstate compact. She said not all agencies in the area want to deal with that, so they just refuse to to out of state placements, but that her agency doesnt have a problem with it. She said the main problem is that if it doesnt work out, the child has to move back to that state, which is pretty traumatic.

There is also the issue of the fact that i homeschool my son, and want to be able to homeschool any child placed with me (before finalization), she said that in my state (MI) it would be fine, but if the child is from another state we'd have to go by the rules of the other state. So right now i'm going to stick to MI, unless i can't find a child (which i can't imagine given my parameters, male child under 12 any race.)


Katherine
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  #8  
Old 05-21-2006, 11:05 AM
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I live in Michigan. I adopted two girls from Texas. I started out with a private agency and ended up going to the state agency. It didn't cost anything. Texas paid for my travel visit and they flew my girls here when they were placed. I kept record of all travel expenses and was paid for it.
Have you checked with Adopt America? There are many volunteers who will search for a child for you. They will help with all aspects of adoption. I had a very good worker. They have a list of all waiting children and that is how I found my girls.

Had I waited for my private agency to work for me, I wouldn't have my girls. They preferred me to adopt in state. I found the girls I wanted through Adopt America and they helped me go through the state and things moved fast.
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  #9  
Old 06-10-2006, 08:26 PM
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I am from Ohio and adopted from New York using Adopt America also. My husband and I are looking again to adopt. With my daughter very little to no cost involved her Medicaid transfered as soon as she moved here. It did take 3 months from the time I was told she was mine to adopt to get her home with me. I waited for over a year for a match I was open for any race, a girl under the age of 12. Currently we are open for any race 1 or 2 kids under the age of 12 and we have been waiting since December.
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  #10  
Old 06-11-2006, 12:40 AM
queenjane queenjane is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by love4
I live in Michigan. I adopted two girls from Texas. I started out with a private agency and ended up going to the state agency. It didn't cost anything. Texas paid for my travel visit and they flew my girls here when they were placed. I kept record of all travel expenses and was paid for it.
Have you checked with Adopt America? There are many volunteers who will search for a child for you. They will help with all aspects of adoption. I had a very good worker. They have a list of all waiting children and that is how I found my girls.

I havent finished the homestudy yet, so i am not actively searching. Its not costing me anything either since they place state wards. This agency is also a part of the Dave Thomas Foundation, they are a recruitment site for my state (i forget exactly what that is called), so far seem really nice. The SW seems very nice and has called me a few times (called to check up since she hadnt heard from me in awhile and wanted to make sure i was still interested)...she gave me her email address too. There are a couple of boys, one age 6 the other age 4 (singles, not sibs) on my state photolisting, which leads me to believe there might me alot of other boys in that age group that dont make it to the photolisting. I've decided to adopt younger than my son which means under age 9. If i dont get the response i want from this agency then i'll definatly look into Adopt America, USKids, etc...i think i've looked at every state photolisting on the internet! But as i said, there is the whole homeschooling issue to deal with, and want to make sure whatever state the child comes from is ok with that, as i dont want to have to send him to school until finalization.

When you say "state agency" do you mean the local DHS office (not sure what its called now in MI)? Last year when i was calling different agencies, i couldnt even get ahold of anyone from the local social service agency, they had a recording and it basically said to call the private agencies. I had better luck with the private agencies who place state wards, got to talk to several people in depth on the phone, and this year when i moved forward with my plans the two agencies i mentioned in my OP sent me info with one day of me requesting it. So hopefully they will continue to be as attentive.


Katherine
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  #11  
Old 06-11-2006, 03:56 AM
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state and private

In some states you can work with DCF (Social Services) directly. There are also private agencies that contract with the state. In other words they place foster children from the state. There are typically no fees, as the agency is paid by the state and is usually considered a non-profit agency. In general there should be little or no cost to adopt an older child from the US.
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  #12  
Old 06-12-2006, 08:41 PM
queenjane queenjane is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Peggy
In some states you can work with DCF (Social Services) directly. There are also private agencies that contract with the state. In other words they place foster children from the state. There are typically no fees, as the agency is paid by the state and is usually considered a non-profit agency. In general there should be little or no cost to adopt an older child from the US.

I was just curious about the poster from Michigan, who used a "state agency" since i am from Michigan as well, and it seemed the state was really pushing the private agencies that place public kids. I wasnt sure which she meant. I can't imagine getting more personal treatment from the local DHS with its huge caseload, than a private agency with (presumably)a smaller caseload. But i guess each situation is different.


Katherine
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