At Moore Law for Children, our adoption attorneys have worked with many women facing financial fears over an unplanned pregnancy. Supporting her child is one of the most common reasons a woman considers adoption. Another concern is what the adoption may cost if she decides to make an adoption plan.
Are you facing financial fears over an unplanned pregnancy? Perhaps you’re currently financially unstable, unemployed or underpaid. You might be afraid that you will lose your job or not be able to work during pregnancy. Perhaps you cannot imagine how you will manage financially if you choose to parent this child because you cannot afford childcare.
You may also be afraid of adoption because you do not know what it costs to place your baby for adoption. Do you need to hire a lawyer? How can you afford the pregnancy, with medical costs, prenatal care, and perhaps being unable to work?
Financial concerns are a reality with both a pregnancy and raising a child. That is why in California, adoption costs nothing for the birth mother. The law allows adopting parents to ease the financial demands for a birth mother during the “term of confinement” which is defined as during the pregnancy and 4-8 weeks after birth. This financial aid may be divided into three categories:
- Living expenses
- Pregnancy-related expenses
- Adoption expenses
If you decide to place your baby for adoption, you may receive donations from the chosen adoptive family to support your necessary living expenses. These may include food, rent, utilities, transportation, and phone service during this time period. All paid expenses must be recorded and reported to the court to ensure there has been no payment or buy out for the placement of the child. The adoption attorneys at Moore Law for Children will arrange payment to the providers directly where possible or retain receipts.
Adoptive couples also may gift pregnancy-related expenses, such as medical bills, prenatal care, and maternity clothes. There is access to immediate health insurance for pregnant women in California through MediCal. Adopting parents are expected to pay for all other medical costs related to pregnancy and birth not covered by insurance. You should not have to pay any medical expenses for pregnancy or birth.
Then there are adoption specific expenses, which include counseling for the birth mother, the licensed Adoption Service Provider who does the advisement, and takes the consent to the adoption, court filing fees, and attorney fees. With adoption in California, the adoptive parent pays all of the legal expenses, including your attorney. California wants to encourage adoption, not make it a financial burden. Thus, these laws allow you to make an adoption plan at no cost to you.
So, while financial concerns are a reality and a valid reason for not being able to raise a child, it is not an obstacle to adoption. Adoption is valued and in California, the laws are designed to allow women to place their babies for adoption without suffering a financial burden.