How to Adopt a Child with a Disability

Adopting a child can be an exciting opportunity to expand your brood and give a needy child a loving family. But the process requires varied paper works before you welcome a new member in your family. The procedure becomes all the more lengthy and time taking if you choose to adopt a child with a disability from a foreign country. The time involved may range from 6 months to even 4 years and can cost you approximately $20000 to $50000, but it’s all worth the effort. To make the process easy, here are few of vital steps that will help you in bringing the newest member in your family.


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    Find a credible adoption agency specializing in special needs adoption. Most of the orphanages and adoption centers across the world only accept applications submitted by recognized adoption agencies. So, explore and find a special need adoption agency that provides viable help in international special needs adoption.
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    Get information about the adoption procedure. Once you discover a credible adoption agency, seek information from experts about the process, money and time involved in special needs adoption. The information will help you be prepared about the steps ahead and how to go about the adoption process.
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    Assemble your application folder. Your application folder requires a long list of documents, including a criminal background check, certified copies of health documents, cover letter, tax documents stating your yearly income, number of family members, pictures of your family and home and more such details. Additionally, you need to authenticate your documents from a certified and recognized person. The whole process of assembling the documents may take time. So, it is advisable to start it at the earliest once you get the entire information from adoption agency representatives.
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    Complete the adoption application. Apart from all the supplementary documents, you also need to send your application, including your special need child preference in age, health status and sex. Before you sign the application, think well and consult with your family members. Adopting a child with a disability is not at all an easy task. So, discuss well with your family members as your decision will determine the child that will join your family. Any changes in a later date can halt or delay the adoption process.
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    Wait for a referral. When your adoption application is approved, you may receive a referral through the adoption agency. You may even get an offer for a waiting child for adoption. The referral may include medical history of the child, a picture and a brief introduction letter, covering the child’s personality and abilities. If you want more information, you can contact your adoption agency. You can then give your answer whether you wish to adopt the child or not. If you refuse, second referrals can be highly difficult to obtain.
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    Travel to the international location to complete the adoption process. Once you have accepted the referral, you need to wait for the approval notice. You can then obtain an appointment with the concerned person and travel to the location, say China, India, Indonesia or Korea to complete the adoption process.
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    Obtain an exit permit for your adopted child. After completing the adoption process, with the help of your adoption agency you can obtain an exit permit for your child and start the bonding process with the new member of your family.
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    Get an immigrant visa for your child and return to your home country. Show all the necessary documents to the concerned officials, obtain an immigrant visa for your adopted child and safely return back to your country along with your new family member.
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    Complete more paperwork. Once you return back to your home country with your adopted child, check with your adoption agency whether you need to complete any more paperwork. Social workers may visit your home at regular intervals to check how you are bonding with your new child and whether the child is adjusting well in the new environment. You also need to submit photographs of your child and get a social security number for the new addition. You would definitely want a new passport for your child as well.


  • Once you obtain a special needs child referral, ensure to carefully review the child’s medical history. You can even take the medical history report to a pediatrician. You adoption agency will help you in the process and communicate with the orphanage where the child is residing on your behalf. Take the decision carefully as if you discover health problems during the immigration visa exam or on a later date, it may be already too late to refuse adopting the child.
  • Do not get scared with the amount of paperwork involved in the adoption process. A credible adoption agency will make the whole process simple and easy for you. Additionally, when you meet your child you will find all the paperwork and time spent worthwhile.
  • Meeting your child for the first time can be very emotional and overwhelming experience for both you and the child. Do not try to form a loving bond in just a single meeting. Instead, give the child time to adjust and be comfortable around you. Try spending significant amount of time with the child to ensure that they feel safe and comfortable around you and do not get scared by your presence. Give the child space and time and you are sure to get fruitful result in the end.

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Categories: Adoption | Raising Children with Special Needs