A Brief Introduction to Interstate Adoptions

If you are interested in adopting a child, chances are you are not going to want to limit yourself to potential adoptees in an individual state. There are children all over the country who require the love of caring parents, not to mention international children who need a home.

However, as with most aspects of the law, things can get complicated when you start involving more than one state. Oftentimes states have drastically different laws and procedures from one another, and some laws may even contradict one another.

Fortunately, in some cases, state legislatures recognize the need for uniformity in certain situations. Adoption is one such case.

Interstate adoptions are governed by the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children (ICPC). This uniform statutory agreement was drafted and first adopted in 1960 by the State of New York. It has since been adopted by all 50 US states, the District of Columbia, and the US Virgin Islands.

The ICPC actually has provisions for a wide variety of situations beyond adoption in which juveniles may be moved across state lines, but we will limit the scope of this blog to adoption situations.

The purpose of the compact is to ensure safeguards for the children who are being placed with non relatives in a new state. There is a wide array of complex obligations and regulations that must be adhered to in any interstate adoption. Any agency found in violation of the compact’s strict requirements would be considered to have broken the law in both the sending and receiving states, and could face severe penalties including the revocation of relevant licenses, etc.

In order to comply with the ICPC in an interstate adoption, you will need to have approval for the placement of the child from both the state where the child currently resides as well as your home state. This approval can only be granted by each state’s ICPC Administrator.

Obtaining this approval can be a challenging process, and you will need the guidance of a knowledgeable adoption attorney who understands the interstate process and can work with attorneys from the sending state to help ensure your adoption goes as planned.

If you live in the State of North Carolina and you’d like to learn more about the ICPC and interstate adoptions, please contact the NC Adoption Law Center today. We are skilled in the interstate process and will work to ensure your compliance with the ICPC so that you can achieve the interstate adoption you desire.

Written by N.C. Adoption Law Center

N.C. Adoption Law Center

We work hard to provide all our clients with the best and and most helpful legal services. Our attorneys specialize in adoption and other family law cases including divorce, child custody, child support, guardianship, and more.