FOOD FOR THOUGHT
To take an important decision such as adopting a child, it is good to be educated about it beforehand.
You can go to the Family Court. They have all the information about adoption, but mostly about the legislation and how the process works. Another very good place is adoption support groups. There you will meet people who are in the queue and others who have already adopted. In such places you can see what it is like to adopt a child and listen to their stories. To know about the easy steps and the difficult ones, because raising children always has its challenging moments.
You can also read about adoption. There are booklets, which are good sources of information. Booklets like the one you are reading.
In addition to the booklets, there are adoption’s books. Books of Law, Psychology and other subjects. Most of these books are very complex and aimed at professionals such as lawyers and psychologists. There are also many books on how to raise children. These are for all children, adopted or biological. They can be useful to you, after all adopted children are children just like other children.
Waiting in line for your turn.
Once you are qualified for adoption, the next step is waiting. This step is difficult and can take years.
Many accuse the Justice of being slow and inefficient. Certainly there are problems in many courts, but it is not usually like that. The problem is that the line of adoption candidates is long, there is much more people who want to adopt than children to be adopted. The majority to adopt babies or toddlers, and there isn’t so much toddlers. So knowing that it will take time for your turn and that appears one child according to your profile.
About the children who stay in the shelters, as we said, most of them are not available for adoption.
You can visit the Family Court to know about your position in the queue, remembering that this "position" is relative for two reasons: first, each family has defined a child’s profile, and some families will be attended before the others - but remember that changing the profile is a very serious and risky decision. Another reason is that the Court’s goal is to find families for children and not vice versa. So it may be that one family is more suited to another child than another, and the Court has a legal obligation to consider it.
This period can be very hard for candidates. Adoption may seem like a dream come true, and no one wants to wait for their dreams. But it can take long, and some give up. Others make an improper change on their profile, which is not always a good idea.
How can I check my position?
Visit the Family Court to find out about your position in line.
Can I search in other cities?
Yes. Your qualification is valid throughout the national territory. You can visit and ask in other Courts and take your qualification there. Remember that there will be a stage of coexistence, which takes time, and you should move to that other city during that period.
Documents, registration, interviews and courses.
Now you have made the decision and will sign up. Gather the necessary documents and go to the Family Court of your city. Each Family Court has a different routine, but there usually are interviews, home visits, and a course. If all legal requirements are met, and if the Family Court finds that you are able to adopt a child, you will be entitled to adop. This authorization is valid for all national territory.
If you still have questions about the adoption process, now is the time to ask them.
Conditions for adopting a child
In addition to the legal requirements, the Family Court will check other things. Taking care of a child is not a simple task and should not be underestimated. A child will consume lots of money, time and attention. If the father and mother work all day long, it is necessary to think about who will take care of the child, or take into account the expenses of a nanny.
I can not tell you how much it costs to take care of a child. There are families caring for their children with large and small salaries. You will not be accepted if you do not have a high salary, but you need to show that you are responsible, that you are prepared for your child’s needs.
An example of it is the house. A child’s room or a large backyard are not necessary. It would be good, but not mandatory. The child can share the room with siblings and play in whatever space available. But the house needs to be clean and tidy, prepared for a new, small and careless resident.
A common problem among couples is when one wants to adopt and the other does not. Sometimes it is not that one does not want or is against, it is just that he or she is not interested in it. This is a bad start. Having children,be them biological or adopted, it is a big decision for a couple, and it can not be a one-sided decision.
The Profile of the Child
You will be asked about the profile of the child that you want to adopt. They will ask you for the minimum and maximum age, color, gender, siblings, health and other things.
These options will be used when you are in the adoption queue. If the available child is a boy, and you marked just "girl", you will not be called. But if you have marked "boy" or "any gender," this can be your turn. The same goes for other items such as color and age.
The profile is a very serious decision, you have to think very carefully. Do not commit to a profile that later on you will not feel good about calling them your child.
Also think about the fact that we are not able to "choose" that much. With biological children we cannot choose gender, health or if there are siblings. Even the color is approximate to the color of the parents, but it is always possible for the child to look like one of the grandparents.
Many people want to speed up the process and try to rush the process. It's doesn’t work like that. Think of the adoption as a bank. There is a queue inside the agency, and at this point you are queuing outside the agency. Do not try to rush this queue, if the building inside is already full.
What are the documents?
The basic list includes:
• identity card of applicant(s) and social security number;
• marriage or birth certificate of the applicant(s) if applicable;
• proof of residence of the applicant(s);
• proof of income of the applicant(s);
• certificate of physical and mental health of the applicant(s);
• certificate of criminal record;
In addition to these documents, each Family Court may request a few more, such as statements of good moral character from known persons. They can also request photos, including 3 by 4 photos and family photos.
Who can be adopted?
A) Children or adolescents at a maximum of 18 years old at the date of the application for adoption and regardless of legal status;
B) Person over 18 years old who was already under the custody or guardianship of adopters;
C) Over 18 years old, under the terms of the Civil Code.
Who can adopt?
A) Man or woman of legal age, regardless of marital status and as long as they are 16 years older than the child they are adopting;
(B) the spouses or cohabitants, together, provided that one of them is of legal age and family stability is established;
C) Divorced people or separated judicially, together, provided that they agree on custody and visitation regime and provided that the stage of coexistence has been initiated in the constancy of the conjugal society;
D) Tutor or legal guardian, provided that the administration of the pupil's assets or ward is closed and settled;
E) Applicant of the adoption who died in the course of the process, before the sentence is pronounced and provided he or she has manifested their will in life;
F) Foreign family resident or domiciled outside Brazil;
G) All persons who have their authorization deferred, and registered in the Registration of Adoption.
Who cannot adopt
A) Grandparents or siblings of the adoptee;
B) Adopters whose age difference is 16 years younger than the adoptee.
Can I change my profile later?
Yes, all you have to do is talk to the Family Court.
A new birth certificate.
After the stage of coexistence, the Family Court will do the latest checks, making sure the adaptation is going well. If everything is good, the final stage begins, where the judge will order a new birth certificate, new parents, and a new name. With this certificate in hand, the adoption process is over and you can take care of your new family.
How do I know the progress of my process?
Visit the Family Court whenever you want.
What if the biological family shows up?
Before the adoption, the biological parents must have been removed of their family power. Sometimes children are introduced without this stage being completed. The removal can take years. You should be informed about the situation of the removal of the biological family from the beginning. As long as the process of removal of family power is not completed, there is a risk of appeal against the adoption suit.
Once the removal is completed, there is no return, the biological family has lost all rights over the child and adoption can proceed. The process ends with the issuance of the new birth certificate.
GETTING TO KNOW
Getting to know and introducing your new family.
On the coexistence stage you will meet the child who will be your son or daughter. And he or she will meet you. It is a delicate time that should be treated with calm and patience.
No child wants to stay in a shelter, and you are the way out.
Some of them will do things to get your attention. They will cheer for your team, say that you are beautiful and well dressed, say that they will do the homework, things like that. They are even going to say that they prefer chocolate to chayote. Others are suspicious. They have seen a lot of candidates for the other children, but not for them. Sometimes they do not trust adults.
Don’t bring gifts, don’t make a fuss out of the visits. You should show them how family life will look like, and life in family is not a party every day. There will be special days for parties in the future.
Take it easy, follow the instructions of the Family Court and do not try to solve everything in one day.
What if it doesn’t work out?
First, talk to the Family Court.
But what did not work out? A relationship between parents and children has to be built, not love at first sight. Is he or she not the child that you always dreamt of? Maybe not, no child is. But are we the ideal parents? No parent is perfect as well. Neither are the families, which are the sums of all our imperfections.