What Are the Age Requirements to Adopt from Foster Care?
Have you considered adopting from foster care, but worried “I’m too old to adopt”, or even, “I’m too young to adopt”? You’re not alone- one of the most common questions we get from prospective adoptive parents interested in growing their families through foster care adoption is whether they are too old (or too young) to adopt a child from foster care. The truth is, there are very few age requirements in place when it comes to foster care adoption. The most important thing is that your family is prepared to meet the needs of the child you’re adopting.
Am I too old to adopt from foster care?
There is no upper age limit for parents interested in adopting from foster care. In fact, many “older” parents decide that foster care adoption is an excellent way to grow their families after raising other children or fulfilling other parts of their lives’ journeys. Each prospective adoptive family’s age is taken into consideration on a case-by-case basis with the child’s specific needs and situation in mind. If you think you’re too old to adopt from foster care, contact us and we’ll talk about whether foster care adoption is an option for you!
Am I too young to adopt from foster care?
This question is more complex for a few reasons. First, the most important thing for a child (regardless of his or her background) is that their adoptive parent can provide a stable, supportive family environment where their physical, emotional and financial needs are met. For this reason, many states (like Maryland) require parents adopting from foster care to be at least 21 years old before applying.
Private adoption agencies may have additional policies in place to ensure your family is prepared to meet the needs of a child who has experienced life in foster care. Adoptions Together requires all parents adopting from foster care to be a minimum of 25 years old before applying in order to ensure they are stable and prepared for the challenge of growing their family through foster care adoption.
How old are the children eligible for adoption from foster care?
This is a great question. Although it is uncommon, it is possible to adopt an infant from foster care. Most often, children adopted from foster care are school-aged. This is due to a variety of factors. but the primary goal of foster care is to help biological parents remedy the challenges which caused their child to be removed from their care, and help the parents gain stable ground in their lives. There is a lengthy legal process to assist families, and when the parents are unable to reach stability, parental rights are terminated. Typically, this process takes several years and may not occur until a child is old enough to enter school. Most of the children Adoptions Together works with are school-aged children and teenagers.
What are the next steps to adopt from foster care?
If you are interested in learning more about the age requirements of adopting from foster care, feel free to contact us at any time. Our team can help you discuss the options that are best for you, and how you can begin the foster care adoption process.