The Legal Process
In Colorado, the family assessment must be completed by either a licensed child placement agency (adoption agency) or the local department of social services, and cannot be completed by an independent social worker or attorney. Generally the legal finalization of the placement of a child also involves an adoption agency or the department of social services. The adoption agency also provides mandated placement and post-placement services to the adoptive family.
Birth parents are also required to receive counseling through a licensed child placement agency or the department of social services in regard to their decision to place a child for adoption. All counseling is confidential.
When birth parents decide it would be best for their child to be placed for adoption, the child is first legally released by the birth family (relinquished). The child is then available for adoption. Any child can be available for adoption if he/she is less than 18 years of age.
The legal processes governing relinquishments and adoptions vary from state to state, although in every state there needs to be legal relinquishment and a legal adoption. If you do not reside in Colorado, you will need to contact either an adoption agency or your state department of social services’ adoption unit for the specific legal processes in your state.