Financing Your Adoption
As part of the adoption journey, potential adoptive parents will consider the costs of adopting a child. The costs of adopting a child from foster care are low; these adoptions are subsidized by the federal and state funds. With a private adoption, whether the adoption takes place in the US or abroad, most of the costs range from $20,000 to $30,000. Depending upon the birthmother’s circumstances in domestic adoption, or country fees and travel expenses in international adoption, the costs can be significantly higher.
Fortunately, adoption expenses are not all due at the start of the process. The costs are small at the beginning of the process, and become bigger as the adoption progresses.
For many families, a significant portion of the costs of adoption will be recouped after the adoption is completed. Depending upon the family’s income level, families may qualify for the federal adoption tax credit, which was $13,570 in 2017. In addition, employers may offer adoption expense reimbursement as part of a benefits package.
However, this help comes after the adoption is completed, and families must fund their adoptions first. Below are some ideas to consider:
Organizations and foundations such as Caroline’s Promise, Gift of Adoption, Help Us Adopt, Little Flowers Foundation, National Adoption Foundation, Parenthood for Me, Sea of Faces, and Shaohannah’s Hope offer adoption grants. Contact these programs at the websites following.
Organizations and foundations such as A Child Waits Foundation, Abba Fund, National Adoption Foundation, and Oxford Adoption Foundation offer low-interest adoption loans. Contact these programs at the websites below.
We encourage adoptive parents to prepare financially for their adoptive placement. Disciplined savings, loans and gifts from family and friends, home equity loans or lines of credit, liquidating investments, borrowing from the cash value of insurance policies, or borrowing from retirement accounts like 401k accounts, using low- or no-interest credit cards are ways to be prepared financially for the day the child is placed in your care.
Take a part-time job; sell items on E-bay, hold yard sales, and use fund-raising ideas such as recipe book sales, seedling sales, picture-framing parties, silent auctions, walks or bike-a-thons.
Set up an adoption savings account, and look for ways to make extra money. Revamping the family budget can be a way of covering adoption costs. Refinance your mortgage at a lower interest rate. Let others know of your plan and need. Ask your family to give gifts of money, instead of presents, into your adoption fund. The Gotcha Gift Registry and My Registry offer ideas and a website where friends and relatives can contribute to your adoption.
Assistance with Children with Special Needs
Both the state and private agencies may work with children for whom there are no waiting families. This may be due to a child’s handicap, medical condition, older age, or being a member of a sibling group. Depending upon the severity of the child’s special need, agency fees may be reduced in private adoptions.
If the child is being adopted from foster care, the adoptions are often free. There also may be financial assistance from the state and federal government, such as monthly checks, Medicaid, and medical subsidy.
The federal government may reimburse adoptive parents for non-recurring costs of adopting a child with special needs. The current reimbursement amount is $1,500. There is also a South Carolina annual tax deduction of $2,000 for adopting a child with special needs.
Many companies and the military offer adoption benefits to their employees. The benefits range from extended paid leave to cash payments from $1,000 to $10,000. South Carolina State Employees have benefits that range from $5,000 to $10,000. Ask your human resources representative what benefits your company provides.
Adoptive parents may be eligible for federal tax credits and South Carolina state tax deductions; ask your tax advisor about these benefits.
Websites for Financial Assistance
A Child Waits Foundation
A Mother’s Love
Adoption Resource Foundation
America’s Christian Credit Union
Be The One
Chosen and Dearly Loved
Choice Personal Loans
Ephesians 3:20 Foundation
Gift of Adoption Fund
God’s Grace Adoption Ministry
Gotcha Gift Registry
Hebrew Free Loan Association
Help Us Adopt
Joseph’s Dream Coat
Kids for Kayla
Kingdom Kids Adoption Ministries
Little Flowers Foundation
Lifesong for Orphans
National Adoption Foundation
One Chance Foundation
One Less Ministries
Orphan Care Alliance
Oxford Adoption Foundation
Parenthood for Me
Room for One More Child
Sea of Faces
Stone Family Adoption Fund
Tinina Q. Cade Foundation
Christian Family Services only suggests these contacts as possible sources, and makes no specific recommendations about them.