If you live in North Carolina and are adopting a child from another state, the process is known as interstate adoption. Interstate adoption has special requirements compared to intra-state adoption, when you are adopting a child from within the same state where you live. Understanding ICPC regulations, adoption laws, and compliance requirements can help you have a smoother adoption process.
Read on to learn everything you need to know about interstate adoption in North Carolina. Then contact Mills Adoption Law at (919) 306-2899 to schedule a free, 15-minute consultation with Adoption Attorney Bobby Mills.
What is ICPC?
The Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children (ICPC) is a law that impacts the adoption process between states. If you are adopting a child from another state — you must comply with the ICPC before bringing your child home.
The ICPC was enacted in the 1960s and impacts interstate adoptions in all 50 states. Its goal is to ensure the safety of adopted children by creating uniform regulations the adoptive family must follow.
What Does ICPC Do?
The ICPC creates additional requirements that adoptive parents must meet before crossing state lines with their new child. If you’re planning for an interstate adoption, you’ll need to receive approval from your state and the child’s state of residence before bringing them home.
You must provide the child’s current state with information about how you will care for the child, including:
- A summary of your child’s care plan
- Your financial information
- Your home study
- The child’s medical information
You’ll also need to provide the following information:
- Your reason for moving the child to a new state
- The child’s name
- The child’s birthday
- The child’s birthplace
- Your name and your spouse’s name
Your “adoption attorney near me” can help you fill out the standardized forms for the ICPC.
What Is the ICPC Process?
After you provide the above information to the ICPC, the offices in both states will review the information to determine whether moving the child is in their best interests.
Once both states have approved the paperwork, your home state will notify the adoption agency or attorney you’re working with of your approval. Then, that entity will inform you that you can bring your new child home to your state of residence.
Your adoption agency or attorney will likely complete most of the steps in the ICPC process for you, and you may not need to be involved.
How to Speed Up the ICPC Process
While you wait for your ICPC paperwork to clear, you must stay with the adoptive child in the birth mother’s state. The ICPC process can take some time — typically at least a week or two — and many issues can arise that prolong the process. You may feel frustrated or impatient, counting the days until you can take your child home.
However, you can take a few steps to prepare for the ICPC process and speed up your approval. Here are our tips to streamline interstate adoption in North Carolina:
- Understand the ICPC process in advance: Review the paperwork and information you will need to provide as part of the ICPC process before your adoption begins. Understanding the process can help you tackle each step swiftly.
- Renew your home study regularly: The ICPC office in both states will review your home study thoroughly to determine whether moving the child is in their best interest. Home studies in North Carolina expire every 18 months, and you’ll want to make sure yours is up to date. We recommend renewing your home study every year or so leading up to your adoption.
- Keep up communication with your adoption professional: Your family law attorney or adoption agency will be responsible for most steps in the ICPC process. Keep frequent contact with this professional to know where you are in the legal process.
Even with these steps, you may need to wait longer than expected to bring your child home. Be sure to plan, make arrangements with your employer, and be flexible with your plans.
Adoption Is Described as a Journey. Mills Adoption Law Will Be There Every Step of the Way
Are you seeking an interstate adoption? Don’t entrust your family to a law practice that happens to offer adoption services. Instead, consult an informed and experienced adoption attorney specializing exclusively in adoption. With more than 35 years of experience, adoption attorney Bobby Mills has represented all members of the adoption triad—adoptive parents, birth parents, and adoptees. He can help you confidently approach interstate adoption in North Carolina to achieve your dream family. Call (919) 306-2899 or complete our online form to schedule your free, 15-minute consultation.
Mills Adoption Law. Experience for what matters most. Family.
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The information in this blog post (“post”) is provided for general informational purposes only and may not reflect the current law in your jurisdiction. No information in this post should be construed as legal advice from the individual author or the law firm, nor is it intended to be a substitute for legal counsel on any subject matter. No reader of this post should act or refrain from acting based on any information included in or accessible through this post without seeking the appropriate legal or other professional advice on the particular facts and circumstances at issue from a lawyer licensed in the recipient’s state, country, or other appropriate licensing jurisdiction.