The concept of a legally enforceable open adoption agreement is relatively new and may vary from state to state. Birth parents usually have to start the process, but it can be expensive to do so. In general, it is up to the judge to interpret and apply it. This adoption and birth-mother blog highlighted some important points about post-adoption contracts: the autonomy of each state is amazing and a little confusing. Individuals seeking to adopt or adopt should consult their adoption agency or adoption counsel to get a clear picture of their state`s rules on open adoption agreements. An open adoption agreement gives birth and adoption families the opportunity to share their wishes, set clear limits and set expectations for the future: what form of contact they will have, how many contacts they will have, how many times they will be in contact, how the child will be involved, and even if that contact is transmitted by an adoption agency. Having this plan and understanding it on both sides will help ensure that communication and relationships remain consistent over the years. Whether you are putting the child or adopting the child, there are things you should consider. Do you first know your state`s adoption laws. It is important to ask your adoption professional what to expect, because each state is very different. Adoptive parents and birth parents who enter into a contact agreement after adoption should strive to keep the child`s needs at the heart of this process.
Since it is impossible to anticipate the ever-changing needs of the child, it is a good idea to build some flexibility in the agreement. In the end, the child will have his or her own opinion on contact after adoption and the needs of adults will always have to comply with the best interests of the child. A constant among all states is that the breakdown of an agreement after adoption cannot be invoked as a reason for revoking an adoption or waiving the parental rights of adoptive parents. In any case, the implementation of the agreement requires money, time and an understanding of your state`s law. You also have to convince a judge that the contact was broken for no reason, which is quite difficult to prove. This will be the word of the adoptive parents against the word of the birth parents. At the time of adoption, the adoptive parents are irrevocably named the legal parents of the adopted child. Birth certificates are changed and the rights of biological parents are irrevocably separated. You should also express your expectations very clearly when talking about contact with prospective parents after adoption.