Editor’s Note: This article was originally published on May 6, 2019, and has since been updated.
“Can I get paid for adopting out my baby?”
“Do birth mothers get paid for choosing adoption?”
“Do adoption agencies pay birth mothers for going forward with an adoption plan?”
These are a few of the common questions about money that women ask when they’re thinking about adoption. You can’t get paid for making an adoption plan for your child, because it’s illegal to trade a child for money. There is a difference between getting paid for placing, and receiving adoption financial assistance during your pregnancy.
If it’s legal in your state, you may be able to get help from the adoptive parents with your pregnancy expenses. So actually, rather than being compensated for placing a child, you can receive financial assistance.
“How Much Will Adoption Cost Me?”
It doesn’t cost you anything to choose adoption. Adoptive couples are responsible for paying adoption fees, and they might even be able to give you financial help if allowable in your state.
“What Kind of Financial Assistance Can I Receive?”
It’s common knowledge that having a baby is expensive! When you’re pregnant, you’ll face doctor’s bills, having to buy clothes that fit your expanding belly, and even special pregnancy gear such as a belly support band. Plus, you might have to take a sick day away from work if you have pregnancy issues like bad morning sickness.
The adoptive family that you choose can typically pay for the extra expenses that you face. Allowable living expenses will differ based on your state’s laws. Here are a few of the items that you could receive assistance with:
Rent & Living Expenses
Many women dealing with an unplanned pregnancy find that since they’ve had to call in sick to work, they can’t pay rent. If a birth mother can’t afford this living expense due to pregnancy, the adoptive family she chooses can pay her rent (in most states). You can also get help with living expenses like your cell phone bill, utilities, and transportation.
It’s very important to continue having regular prenatal visits throughout your pregnancy. And women with high-risk pregnancies will require extra care, more doctor’s appointments, and even prescription medication. Whatever the medical costs during your pregnancy might be, an adoptive family could cover those.
Having a healthy, well-balanced diet is important not just for your health, but for your baby’s health too. And it’s pretty common to eat more food during your pregnancy-you are eating for two, after all! Typically, the adoptive family can help out with any food expenses that the birth mother incurs during pregnancy so that she can maintain the health of her baby.
For your mental health during the adoption process, Lifetime strongly recommends getting therapy. The sooner you start the process of healing, the better off you’ll be in the long run.
Lifetime can connect you with a licensed therapist or a peer counselor, or both! A peer counselor is a woman who’s already made an adoption plan for her child. As she’s been where you’re at right now, she can give you valuable tips on what to expect. The adoptive family will be responsible for paying for these counseling services.
When you choose adoption for your baby or child, you don’t need to pay for legal help from adoption attorneys. The adoptive family you’ve selected is responsible for paying legal fees.
State Laws About Adoption Expenses
Every state has its own laws about which expenses can be paid for or repaid by an adoptive family. Your adoption lawyer will know which financial assistance options are available to you during the adoption process.
No matter what your situation is, an adoption attorney can help you understand what expenses the adoptive family can pay for to ease your financial strain.
To sum this up, if you’re wondering, “Do I get paid for adopting out my baby?”, the answer is no. The mother of a baby does not “get paid” for adoption. it is illegal to “give your baby up” for adoption to make money, and no adoption agency will pay you for your baby or for your consent to adoption. However, it’s always free to choose adoption, and you may be able to receive financial assistance during your pregnancy.
Do you have questions about adoption? Call Lifetime for answers!
We’re available 24/7 by text or phone call at 1-800-923-6784.
Mardie Caldwell, C.O.A.P., is a nationally-recognized adoption expert and the Founder of Lifetime Adoption Agency. She has been working in adoption since 1986 and is also an award-winning author and speaker.
Mardie knows the sorrow of coping with infertility, and is an adoptive parent who experienced many of the challenges adoptive families might face. In various media appearances worldwide, publications, and her podcast, Mardie important steps that must be taken to complete a safe and secure adoption. Having adopted her son, Mardie knows firsthand the joys of raising an adopted child.
Mardie’s life mission is to help adoptive parents and birth parents find each other. With Lifetime Adoption Agency, she seeks to build happy families and provide precious infants and children with a loving and secure future.