Other Adoption Issues
1. Home Study
- A home study is a report about prospective adoptive parents who wish to adopt domestically or internationally. The home study process is used to protect a child by screening a prospective adoptive family. Many families consider the home study process to be educational because it addresses many parenting and adoption issues. In addition, the home study approval provides reassurance to biological parents by confirming that the family can provide a stable, secure, loving home to a child.
2. Open Adoption
- Generally, an open adoption is one in which the biological parents and adoptive parents have a way to communicate directly with each other. This may involve the exchange of identifying information.
- In an open adoption the rights of the biological parents to the child are terminated and the adoptive parents become the legal parents. However, the biological parents and adoptive family remain in contact.
3. Opening Adoption Records
- An adopted child may be able to obtain identifying information about birth parents through the Georgia Adoption Reunion Registry once they reach the age of 21. Non-identifying information can be released to the child or adoptive parents at any time.
- The child at age 21 may have access to identifying information, may initiate a confidential search for a birth parent, or may obtain sibling information. To obtain information through the registry process, the biological parent or sibling must have consented to the child obtaining such information. Georgia law provides that mutual consent is required to open adoption records. Many times, birth parents do not have information about the registry and have therefore not signed the consent form. The social workers at the registry may initiate a confidential search for the birth parents to determine if they want contact.
- For individuals who have accessed the registry and have not had success, Ronnie can assist by petitioning the appropriate court to request that the adoption record be opened and released. Ronnie will explain this process and the requirements to prospective clients so that they can make the decision whether to proceed with the filing of the court action.