Looking to adopt?

Why choose independent adoption?

Independent adoption process

Private Independent Adoption allows birth parents to implement adoption plans with prospective adoptive parents personally selected by them. 

Independent Adoption is a sensible alternative to traditional closed-adoption practices. Acknowledging a child’s history and family-of-origin helps strengthen her/his self-esteem.

Decision making in private independent adoption proceedings is fully informed. Adopting parents who have been personally selected by a birth parent to parent her child will learn about her social and medical history, the reason she is choosing adoption as her parenting plan, the identity of her baby’s birth father and his feelings about the adoption plan.

Adoption Concerns

Adoption can be a memorable and rewarding path to parenthood. you do have choices.

For most adopting parents, choosing adoption as their parenting plan is an easy decision. Even so, many prospective adoptive families are reluctant to get the ball rolling because they have legitimate concerns about being personally selected by the right birth mother, her baby’s health, adoption planning, birth father rights, post-birth contact and adoption expenses.

Adopting families interested in private Independent Adoption are usually ready to address and resolve these kinds of concerns.

Experience has shown that, as they move forward with adoption planning, adopting families get comfortable with adoption protocols that are essential to the process. 


WhAT IS an Independent adoption LIKE?

Adoption planning is based on openness, honesty and mutual trust. Unlike agency adoption law, independent adoption is structured in compliance with Chapter 3, “Independent Adoptions,” of Part 2, “Adoption of Unmarried Minors,” of Division 13, “Adoptions” of the California Family Code.

  • Birth parents personally select their child’s adopting family.
  • Birth parents and adopting parents are completely involved in the entire adoption process.
  • Both families mutually decide how much future contact (involvement) they want to have.
  • Adopting parents are present when their child is born.
  • Child will be discharged directly to adopting parents from the hospital.

Independent Adoptions are planned in three Phases:

Phase 1

Initial consultation

A private conference with an ethical attorney who has extensive adoption expertise is helpful to explain the different adoption procedures available to adoptive parents. 

Phase 2

Adoption outreach

A qualified adoption attorney will help prospective adoptive parents:

  • Structure an adoption plan that meets their needs;
  • Create a family profile;
  • Prepare for birth parent contact;
  • Evaluate the legal aspects of an adoption plan they are considering with a birth mom who has personally selected them to parent her child;
  • Establish birth mom’s budget regarding adoption-related living expenses, if any, incurred during pregnancy and the six-week to two-month period post-birth.
Phase 3

Case management

After adopting parents are personally selected by a birth mom to parent her child and have committed to proceed with her in adoption planning, a qualified adoption attorney will:

  • Assist adopting parents maintain contact with birth parent(s) to secure an adoption plan that meets everyone’s needs;
  • Request a hospital tour pre-birth for birth parent and adopting parents;
  • Provide adopting parents with copies of birth parent’s medical records generated pre and post-birth;
  • Interface with adoption counselor who may be asked to provide birth parent with adoption-related counseling;
  • Supervise birth and placement process;
  • Structure agreed-upon post-adoption contact, if any.


Legal Help

When adopting parents are personally selected by a birth parent to parent her child, they will want to choose an attorney with adoption expertise to help them finalize the legal aspects of their adoption plan. The attorney will provide adoptive parents with an Attorney-Client Fee Agreement applicable to the specific circumstances of their particular adoption plan.

Sample Adoption Budget – $25,000 – $35,000

  • $350.00 – Initial Consultation – see above description
  • $7,500.00 – Adoption Outreach fee – see above description
  • $7,500.00 – Case Management fee – see above description
  • $7,000.00+ est. – Attorney Fees – (20 hours or more at average of $350.00/hour, dependent on attorney chosen) – A legal fee to an attorney selected by adoptive parents to legally finalize the adoption plan with the birth mom who has personally selected them to adopt her baby. The attorney will provide adoptive parents with a written attorney/client fee agreement identifying the legal steps needed to finalize their adoption plan – and the legal fees and costs related thereto.  Realistically, it may take 20 attorney hours, or more, to finalize the adoption, depending on case circumstances;
  • $500.00 est. – Birth Parent legal fees – A reasonable attorney fee (up to a maximum of $500.00, unless a higher fee is agreed to by the parties) for legal services rendered on behalf of the birth parent, if she elects to be represented by independent counsel (please see Family Code §8800(d)(1));
  • $1,000.00 est. – Social Worker feesA reasonable fee to the adoption services provider who is statutorily mandated to provide specified adoption-related services to the birth parent (please see Family Code §8801.5(f));
  • $300.00 est. – Birth Parent Counseling fees – A reasonable counseling fee to the adoption services provider or licensed psychotherapist who may be asked by birth parent to provide her with adoption-related counseling (please see Family Code §8801.5(c)(5));
  • $4,500.00 – Adoption Investigation fee [or $1,550.00 with a current pre-placement home study] – A statutory fee due to the state agency [the CA Department of Social Services] which investigates adoptive parents’ adoption and submits a report regarding the granting of their adoption petition to the court in which their adoption petition is pending (please see Family Code Section 8810(a)(1)); and
  • Travel expenses – Charges for travel expenses (e.g., mileage at prevailing IRS rate) related to the adoption services which adoptive parents and their baby’s birth parent(s) are provided at the Center.
  • Birth Parent Expenses, if applicable – In addition, adoptive parents may agree to pay birth parent adoption-related expenses — e.g., uninsured medical expenses incurred during pregnancy, if any, and adoption-related living expenses (food, housing, utilities, cell phone, transportation and maternity clothing) incurred during the pregnancy and the six-week to two-month postpartum period [depending on whether their baby is delivered naturally or via c-section].  Any request by birth mom for adoption-related financial assistance must be in writing; and adoptive parents will be provided written receipts for any money disbursed to birth parent. (Please see Family Code §8812.)

“est.” is an estimated cost depending on the actual circumstances of an adoption plan. Adoption budgets will vary; this sample budget is provided for informational purposes only. 

I would like to receive more information about private Independent Adoption at the Sacramento Adoption Center, LLC.

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