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Types of Adoption in Michigan PDF Print E-mail

Michigan law allows for many different types of adoptions. The most common adoptions are infant adoptions, state and court ward adoptions, relative adoptions, step-parent adoptions, intercountry and interstate adoption, and adult adoptions.

  •  Infant Adoption - Infants place in adoption by child placing agencies or by the parent through direct placement.

  • Agency adoption - In agency adoptions, the parent releases the adoptee to a child placing agency. The agency selects the prospective adoptive parent from among its applicants and consents to the adoption. In many agencies it is possible for the adoptee's parent to participate in the selection of the prospective adoptive parent. The sharing of identifying information between the child's parent and adoptive parent is permitted as well as an agreement for continued contact. Agencies can place a child with a prospective adoptive parent before formal placement through a temporary placement (See Section E, Temporary Placement Prior to Adoption) or by licensing the prospective adoptive parent as a foster parent.

  • Direct placement adoption - The parent of the adoptee personally selects the prospective adoptive parent, transfers physical custody of the adoptee to the adoptive parent and consents to the adoption. The parent retains all parental rights over the adoptee until formal placement. Attorneys and child placement agencies can assist a parent in making a direct placement. 

Information about a prospective adoptive family is given to the parent or guardian seeking to place a child for adoption by an attorney, child placing agency or the prospective adopting parent. In addition, the preplacement assessment must be given to the parent before placement of the adoptee. The parent or guardian and the prospective adoptive parent will decide whether to exchange identifying information and whether to meet each other.

In a direct placement, the parent may place the child with the prospective adoptive parent before formal placement. This is called a temporary placement and can only be done if all the legal requirements are met. Temporary placement will be explained further in Section E, below.

  • State and court ward adoption - Adoption of a child whose parental rights have been terminated by the juvenile division of the probate court and are committed to the state (state wards) or are placed under the care and supervision of the state (court wards).

The FIA is responsible for the adoptive placement of state wards and court wards. These children are placed by the FIA and by child placing agencies under contract with the state. Most of the children fall into the following groups:

  1. Minority children
  2. Older children
  3. Children with physical, emotional or mental impairments
  4. Family groups of two or more children

The FIA's emphasis in adoption of state and court wards is on placement with relatives or with foster parents with whom the adoptee has a significant relationship. In fact, approximatley 70 percent of the FIA's adoptions, each year, are with foster parents and relatives.
 
For those children for whom a family is not readily available, the FIA uses a variety of recruitment efforts such as newspaper articles, telelvision, local child placing agency recruitment and the Michigan Adoption Resource Exchange (MARE) photolisting book. The MARE ohotolisting book can be found in many public libraries, at many child placing agencies and at many of the local offices of the FIA.

  • Relative adoption - The adoption of a child by a relative (See Section B, Definitions, Relative). Many court provide the necessary services for relative adoptions.

  • Step-parent adoption - The adoption of a child by a step-parent. In the case of a divorce, the non-custodial parent must consent to the adoption or the rights of the non-custodial parent must be terminated because the court has determined that the non-custodial parent has failed significantly in his or her parental responsibilities. The court provides the necessary services for step-parent adoptions.

  • Intercountry or interstate adoption - The adoption of a child from another country, or from another state by a Michigan family. Michigan law recognizes the adoption, the consent to adoption, or the release of a child for adoption, if any one of those actions is in accordance with the laws of the state or country in which it was executed. Michigan law permits courts to certify an adoption completed in another country so that a Michigan birth certificate can be issued for the child.

  • Adult adoption - Adoption of an adult adoptee by another adult with the consent of the adoptee. As with all Michigan adoptions, adult adoption makes the adoptee an heir of the adopting parent. The court or an attorney can assist in an adult adoption.
 
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Foster Law Offices, Esq, is located in Jenison, Michigan, and serves the legal needs of clients throughout West Michigan in all communities, included but not limited to Holland, Ionia, Muskegon, Grand Haven, Grand Rapids, Ada, and Cascade.
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