for Choosing An International Adoption Agency
By Allison Martin
Your choice of adoption agency or facilitator is crucial to your adoption
experience. Working with someone who is ethical and knowledgable about
adoption will provide rich benefits for you and your child's life for
years to come. On the other hand, if you are not careful you may be faced
with concerns over sudden rises in cost, ethics, lack of essential medical
and background information, or even a failed adoption. Unfortunately it
is not easy to obtain good information on agencies or facilitators. Checking
directly with other parents and with the government programs responsible
for oversight is essential. In addition, these links provide helpful resources
to start the process in making your decision.
330 C Street S.W., Washington, DC 20447
NAIC is a federal service of the Administration for Children, Youth
and Families, Department of Health and Human Services. Well organized
website includes professional factsheets and databases on adoption law,
agencies and services.
National Adoption Directory
Search this database for the officials who regulate adoption in your
state or your agency's state of business, including state adoption specialists,
state liscensing specialists, and public child welfare agencies. May
also be useful for locating general adoption support groups in your
Adoption Fact Sheet
A detailed presentation of the of the process, complexity, and concerns
involved in international adoption. Highly recommended.
Adoption and Agency Liability
This articles provides an historical overview of agency liability in
failed adoptions and gives basic advice on what you can do to protect
Joint Council on International
Children's Services (JCICS)
The JCICS is a professional affiliation of international adoption agencies
who subscribe to a Standards of Practice designed to protect the rights
of children, birth parents, and adoptive parents. Member agencies (listed
on the website) are "licensed child placement agencies who currently
qualify as non-profit organizations under the guidelines of Sections 501(c)(3)
of the Internal Revenue Code." A useful website.
to select an agency
Articles and resouces for selecting an adoption agency.
Concerns for Children (ICC)
911 Cypress Dr., Boulder, CO 80303-2821
The ICC's Report on Intercountry Adoption includes a detailed
reference listing of selected adoption agencies and facilitators. According
to the ICC, most agencies selected for listing have been liscensed for
two years, have (or will have) 501(c)(3) non-profit status, and have had
programs in a particular country for at least one year (or a designated
pilot program). A large selection of articles on adoption is also included
in the report (read the book review
for more information). Updates are available during the year.
Better Business Bureau
Provides a listing by state of Better Business Bureaus.
List of Attorney General offices for each state, provided by Attorney
General's Office of Alabama
An Agency For International Adoption
Exceptional overview of considerations, concerns, and questions to ask
in choosing an agency, including programs, costs, parental support, and
ethical business practices.
- Adoption - Legal Resources
Well defined set of links to attorney organizations and information on
adoption law. See also the Adoption
Primary focus is on adoption difficulties, but includes information for
selecting an agency. A new feature is their "Consumer Protection"
email list. There is no other site quite like this one.
Council on Accreditation
for Children and Family Services
120 Wall Street, New York, New York 10005
Accreditation body with rigorous standards, with emphasis on social work,
human and health services. Founded in 1977 as a joint effort of Family
Service America (FSA) and the Child Welfare League of America (CWLA).
A number of organizations involved in adoption either endorse or are accredited
by the Council.