To the Rescue of Busy Professionals
Take your visual communication to the next level
Domestic Adoption in India: 5 Steps Towards a Family
chillibreeze writer — Vaishnavi Verma
The questions have been answered, concerns clarified, emotions handled, problems resolved and finally, the big decision has been made. The last step now is to find and bring home the little one who is worth all these strenuous efforts. The process of adoption in India is a time-consuming and tedious one, but a little care will ensure a smooth journey through this mammoth task.
Step 1: Registration:
The first step towards a hassle-free adoption process would be to register in a genuine adoption co-ordinating agency. The CARA publishes a list of authentic agencies for adoption every year. The list can be accessed from their website www.adoptionindia.nic.in. The registration cost would approximately amount to Rs.200/- .
Tip #1: Never register with multiple agencies; it may cause delay and duplication in the procedure.
Step 2: Pre-Adoptive Counselling:
Once registered, the agency assigns a social worker to help you with the pre-adoptive counselling. The social worker will visit you several times to analyse your suitability as adoptive parents. Also, they help in responding to the doubts, fears and clarifications associated with the adoption phenomenon.
The social worker performs an assessment on your living standard and also the ability to foster a child and prepares a detailed Home Study Report which acts as a “No Objection” certificate for the adoption. The Home Study Report preparation costs about Rs.1000/- and excludes the travel allowance to be paid to the social worker for the home visit.
Once the Home Study Report has been approved, it is time to submit documents that showcase your financial, health, social and marital status. The basic documents that are normally required are Proof of Age or Birth Certificate, Marriage Certificate, Couple’s Photograph, Medical Certificate of the adoptive parents, Income Tax Returns papers or Salary Certificate of the Adoptive Parents and Property Statement of the couple. Some agencies may even require alternate childcare arrangements mentioned in a letter if the adoptive mother is working. Additional supportive documents are required in case of a single adoptive mother or father.
Tip #2: Maintain all correspondence and terms with the agency in writing.
Step 3: Child Selection:
Once your Home Study Report and the documents submitted have been approved, you are not far from the child. In case you have any pre-requisites with regards to child, make it clear to the agency so that they can choose a child who matches your needs. This process normally takes around 4-6 months, but keep following up with the agency once every 2 months.
The agency will show you the child as per your needs and will seek for your confirmation during which they will allow up to a maximum of 3 rejections. Once you confirm, you can bring the child home with you and this period is termed as Pre-Adoptive foster care. Also, the agency would now initiate the legal proceedings relevant to the adoption criteria.
The expenses paid to the adoption agency on selection of the child include the maintenance and medical charges. The maintenance charges as per CARA should not exceed Rs.15000/- on the basis of Rs.50/- per day from admission to foster care. Also, the medical expenses made on the child can be claimed to a maximum of Rs.9000/- with supporting bills.
Tip #3: Always get an independent medical advice about the child before adoption.
Step 4: Legal Procedures:
The legal procedures are initiated by the agency who appoints a lawyer for this purpose. The lawyer files a petition in court with all the relevant documents and you have to be present in the court for the hearing, along with the child. This legal procedure normally takes about 6-10 weeks at the end of which, the child legally becomes your adopted child. The legal charges are to be borne by you on submission of bills for all the expenses.
There are 3 different laws, HAMA (Hindu Adoption and Maintenance Act), GAWA (Guardians and Wards Act) and JJ (Juvenile Justice) Act and the child can be placed under any depending on which category you fall into. Make it a point to know about these laws before you sign the relevant adoption documents.
The total costs that are included in the whole process include Registration cost, Home Study Report preparation cost, Travel allowance, Child Maintenance, Medical and Legal Charges.
Tip #4: Ask for a break-up of the cost the agency claims to have spent on the child.
Step 5: Post adoption counselling:
For a period of 1 year or as directed by the court, the agency appoints a social worker to provide post adoptive counselling to help the adoptive parents handle post adoption hitches. They also prepare follow-up reports which are then submitted to the Social Welfare Officer and the Court.
Tip #5: Always adopt from an authorised agency and do not enter into any private illegal dealings. Private dealings can look faster but are not reliable and may even result in you losing the child at the end.
The labours and obstacles faced is a seed for the long-term joy and happiness. With a little care and patience, the experience would turn into a smooth and memorable one. After all, it is not about finding a child, but about finding a family.
Editor's note: Most articles submitted to Chillibreeze go through a selection process. Only 30 percent of submitted articles are accepted for publication on the Chillibreeze.com featured article list. All accepted articles are edited and proofread for glaring errors of punctuation and grammar. Sentence structure is changed in certain cases and sometimes, entire sections are rewritten. If you notice any errors that have slipped through the cracks, do let us know! (Email us at info at chillibreeze dot com).
Chillibreeze's disclaimer: This is a contributed article and was published on Chillibreeze in August, 2010. The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author(s) and do not reflect the views of Chillibreeze as a company. Chillibreeze has a strict anti-plagiarism policy. Please contact us to report any copyright issues related to this article. The relevance of the facts and figures cited (if any) could change after a period of time.
More on Chillibreeze.com
Other popular articles on Chillibreeze:
>> Read more articles written by Chillibreeze writers:
Urgent 24 Hour Editing