Understanding the Adoption Process in Arkansas

What is the First Step of the Adoption Process?

The first step of the adoption process is to contact an adoption professional. This can be done by contacting a licensed child-placing agency or an attorney who specializes in adoption. The professional will help you determine if you are eligible to adopt, what type of adoption is right for you, and will provide information about the children available for adoption.

To be eligible to adopt in Arkansas, you must be:

  • At least 21 years old
  • A resident of Arkansas for at least six months prior to filing your adoption petition
  • Financially stable enough to support a child
  • Have no criminal history of child abuse or neglect
  • Have no history of drug abuse

The type of adoption you choose will determine the next steps in the process. If you choose to adopt through a licensed agency, they will provide services to help you throughout the process and may have children available for placement. If you choose to adopt privately, the professional can help connect you with resources and assist with paperwork. You may also work with an adoption attorney if you have questions about your legal rights or need assistance with paperwork.

What is a Home Study?

After choosing an adoption path, the next step is to complete a home study. A home study is required for all types of adoptions in Arkansas. The purpose of a home study is to ensure that you are prepared to adopt and can provide a safe, stable, and loving home for a child.

The home study process includes:

  • An in-person meeting with a licensed social worker
  • A criminal background check and child abuse registry check for all adults in the household
  • Reference checks
  • A financial assessment
  • A home safety inspection
  • Completion of required adoption education classes

The home study usually takes several months to complete. Once it is approved, you will be ready to move on to the next step in the adoption process.

What Possible Obstacles Can Arise During the Adoption Process?

The most common obstacle in the adoption process is finding a child to adopt. If you are working with a licensed agency, they may have children available for placement. If you are adopting privately, you will need to find a birth mother who is willing to place her child with you. This can be done through personal connections, online resources, or adoption attorneys.

Another obstacle that can arise is the home study process. The home study can be challenging and time-consuming. It is important to work closely with your social worker and complete all required steps in a timely manner.
The last obstacle that can occur is the legal process. The adoption must be finalized in court before the child can officially become part of your family. This can be a lengthy and complicated process. It is important to have an experienced attorney by your side to ensure that all paperwork is filed correctly and the adoption is finalized in a timely manner.

Will Hiring a Lawyer Help Me During the Adoption Process?

The adoption process can be long and challenging, but it is also incredibly rewarding. By working with an adoption attorney and taking the time to complete the required steps, you can provide a loving home for a child in need. Call us today at (501) 891-6000 to get the legal help you deserve.