Do You Get Paid to Adopt a Child to a New Family?
In California, it is illegal for any person or agency to offer you money or anything else of value in exchange for your consent to an adoption. However, FCCA and the adoptive family are legally and ethically allowed to assist you with expenses that are:
- directly related to your pregnancy
- necessary for the welfare of you and your baby, and
- incurred during the pregnancy and post-delivery recovery period (usually 4-6 weeks, absent unusual medical circumstances)
As an expectant mother considering adoption, you are entitled to free adoption services, and you should never have to struggle with adoption or pregnancy-related expenses. Here, learn more about the types of financial assistance FCCA can offer to prospective birth mothers in California.
Does putting a baby up for adoption cost money?
With FCCA, the answer to this question is always “No.” All of our services are provided at no cost to you, including:
- Counseling and support services provided by a licensed professional
- Adoption planning and matching services
- Pre- and post-placement contact mediation
- And more
In addition, any legal or medical costs you incur during your pregnancy will be covered for you. This includes the costs of prenatal care, your hospital stay, and any other legal or medical services you may need during the adoption process.
How do mothers get “paid” for adoption in California?
It is illegal for any parent to be “paid” to place his or her child for adoption. However, in addition to the legal, medical and counseling services that are provided at no cost to you, you can receive certain living expenses incurred during your pregnancy, such as:
- housing (rent or mortgage)
- food for your household
- basic utilities for your household
- maternity clothing
While it is perfectly legal and ethical to receive assistance with these types of expenses, it is important to remember that adoption for compensation is not legal in California or anywhere in the United States. It is unethical and illegal to receive a gift of, or payment for, anything of permanent value that will exceed the length of your pregnancy and recovery, such as a car or furniture. Anyone who offers you these kinds of incentives is working outside the legal boundaries for adoption in California. And if this person is willing to be dishonest and unethical in this area, they may be dishonest and unethical with you, as well.
For this reason, be very careful about working with anyone who doesn’t abide by these legal and ethical standards.
How much can I get paid for adoption expenses?
The total amount of living and medical expenses you may receive will vary depending on your individual circumstances, including your current income, your living situation, and the amount of other financial support you are currently receiving.
Be prepared to discuss your financial needs with FCCA so that we can give you appropriate advice as to which expenses may be legally paid by the agency or by the adoptive parents. Your adoption social worker will help ensure that your financial needs are met. You will need to sign for all items received or paid on your behalf, since the adoptive parents must report all of these payments to the court at the time of adoption finalization.
Why do you get paid expenses for putting your baby up for adoption?
It is common, and even expected, that most prospective birth mothers will need some financial assistance to help offset the costs of pregnancy and adoption. As you consider one of the most crucial decisions of your life, you deserve to have the peace of mind that your financial needs will be met.
By having your living, medical, legal and counseling costs covered, you can focus on what truly matters: making the best choices for yourself and your baby. These payments are unconditional gifts that do not need to be repaid if you change your mind about the adoption plan. However, if you received those payments with no intent to place your child for adoption, or you accept payments from more than one family, you could be criminally or civilly prosecuted for fraud.
To learn more about FCCA’s free adoption services and the additional financial support we can offer during your pregnancy, call us to speak with an adoption counselor, confidentially and with no obligation.