Family Court judges in Rhode Island recently approved the adoption of nineteen children. 250 people filled the family law courtroom usually used for divorce hearings and custody battles to celebrate the adoption of six girls and thirteen boys. The children ranged in age from one to ten.
The Rhode Island Supreme Court Chief Justice called the event the happiest day of the year because families are being created rather than dissolved. Family Court judges approve approximately 500 adoptions a year, but there are still over 300 children waiting to find permanent homes.
Parents wishing to adopt a child may try to do so through an agency or independently. Adoption agencies are regulated by the state and have a license to place children with adoptive parents. There are both public and private adoption agencies. Public agencies usually handle children who are wards of the state, while private adoption agencies are often run by charities which are placing children for adoption by an expecting women.
Most states also allow independent adoption. An independent adoption is a direct arrangement between the birth parents and the adoptive parents. Because of the complexity of adoption, the adoptive parents should be sure to get the correct information in order to ensure that the paperwork involved is handled properly. An open adoption is a form of independent adoption in which the biological parents maintain some form of contact with the adoptive parents and child even after the adoption.
Adoptions through identification are a combination of an independent and an agency adoption. Adoptive parents may find a birth mother and then go through an adoption agency to complete the adoption. This allows adoptive parents to have greater control over choosing the child they adopt while still having the benefit of the professional services offered by an agency.
Source: Providence Journal, "Nineteen children adopted at ceremony in R.I. Family Court / Gallery," Lynn Arditi, Nov. 17, 2012