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Waiting Child

Finding a Child

Pre-Placement Visits

Counseling

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Independent

Finding a Child

Hiring an Attorney

Birth Expenses

Adoption Insurance


International

Differences to Expect

Financial Resources

 

Hiring an Attorney

Here are some suggestions to help keep your attorney fees reasonable.

1. Hire an attorney who is experienced in handling adoptions. Don't select an attorney just because he or she is a friend or on the recommendation of friends, unless they were satisfied with this attorney's fees and services for their own adoption. You don't want to pay an inexperienced attorney to learn on the job.

2. Have realistic expectations about the role of an attorney. The attorney should provide competent legal services, but should not be relied on to perform "hand holding" through the adoption process. Other professionals and support groups can fulfill this need.

3. Ask the following questions:

  • What is the average cost of the adoptions you've handled?
  • Do you charge a flat fee or bill by the hour?
  • If a flat fee, what does that fee include? Home study? Matching with a birth mother? All legal fees? Counseling services? Advertising?
  • Are expenses, such as preparation of letters and documents, photocopying, telephone calls, and postage, charged separately?
  • Is a retainer fee required up front, and if so, how much is it?
  • If the birth mother changes her mind, what happens to the retainer fee?
  • 4. Come to all meetings well-prepared, with papers organized and questions thought out in advance, since attorneys generally charge by the hour.

     

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