Adopting a Child From Within Your Family or Community in Alberta?
There are situations where, a person wanting to place their child for adoption is matched with someone privately and without the guidance and assistance of an adoption agency. For the most part, these sorts of adoption matches occur within families, communities, or within close social circles.
If a person has agreed to place their child with someone they know from within their family or direct social circle, you will participate in “The Private Direct Adoption Program”.
“Private Direct” placement refers to adoptions where:
- A pregnant person or a person who is the parent(s) of a minor child decides to place that child for adoption
- The pregnant person or parent(s) chooses somebody from within their family or social circle with whom to place the child
- The person(s) they have chosen agrees to be placed with the child
- The adopting parties reside within the jurisdiction of the Alberta Courts
The principle behind Private Direct Adoption is that parties themselves are capable and should be trusted to choose adopting parents from among people they know. When properly applied, these situations can prove ideal, ensuring that children remain within their extended families, social circle, community and/or culture.
Some Challenges to Private Direct Adoption
Private Direct Adoption works best if the principles of open adoption are conscientiously applied in order to avoid the sort of shaming and secretiveness that can occur around such issues within small insular groups.
Based on well-researched and documented experience, all agency adoptions are now enthusiastically “open”, an approach which is entrenched in all the supporting legislation. Some adopting couples however, who may be anxious about open adoption, may seek out Private Direct Adoptions hoping that a private legal arrangement can better limit them from any future contact or influence associated with the biological parents. It is our firm recommendation that any prospective adopting parents who are approaching adoption in this manner conduct further research. Such couples are invited to contact Small Miracles for direction.
Usually, the only professional intervention in a Private Direct Adoption occurs with the filing of the Court documents required to facilitate the legal aspects of the adoption.
Much of the social due diligence normally associated with adoption is circumvented in Private Direct Adoption. There is no information or professional counselling provided for any of the parties and there is no provision for ongoing lifetime birth parent counseling.
Remember, in most adoptions, you will not only be engaging the pregnant woman, but also having to navigate the rights of the paternal family. It is vitally important than any required notifications and consents with respect to the biological father are respected and legally addressed!
Be Careful That You Are Not Breaking the Law!
The declining number of available children (particularly newborns) combined with lower fertility among couples who now tend to wait longer to start families, has made adoptable babies very sought after.
Human beings, however, should never be reduced to the status of commodity. This is especially true of human children who are for many, many years, dependent on the love and good will of adults for their survival and development.
For this reason, the international community (The Hague Convention) has established principles prohibiting activities that might either lead to, or be perceived as, the human trafficking of children. Canada and Alberta are among jurisdictions that have entrenched these principles in their domestic law.
When engaging in activities that might lead to the filing of a Private Direct Adoption, the participating parties must not:
- Engage in any kind of solicitation (You cannot place an advertisement stating you are looking to adopt a child.)
- Offer any kind of an inducement (In other words, you cannot offer to provide any kind of financial or material encouragement or reward to someone in an attempt to have them place their child with you; this includes prenatal vitamins!)
- Use any kind of force (or threat of force) or otherwise harass or menace anybody in an attempt to have them place their child with you.
- Cannot charge any fee or ask or receive any financial or material benefit for introducing someone looking to place a child and prospective adopting parents – ONLY a licensed adoption agency can facilitate an adoption!
Evidence that any of these activities can lead to serious legal repercussions for the individuals involved and potentially affect the legitimacy of the adoption itself. If you have any questions or concerns about Private Direct Adoption, don’t hesitate to contact Small Miracles Adoption.
Why Engage Small Miracles Adoption to File Your Private Direct Adoption?
If an adoption is not handled correctly from both a legal and social perspective, Private Direct Adoptions can be a minefield. By engaging Small Miracles Adoption for your Private Direct Adoption, not only will the Court application be professional and correct, but compliance with all applicable laws and adoption ethics will be assured!
*Small Miracles Adoption will file your Private Direct Adoption in all Alberta Court jurisdictions!
Complete the Adoption Services Application Form if you are interested in a Private Direct Adoption.