“Why should we pay adoption fees up front, before we have a match? I have a friend who is adopting too, and she says that her agency only asks for part of the fee up front. And then once they’re matched, they pay the rest of the fee. Why should we be paying an adoption agency in advance?”
At our adoption agency and with many adoption professionals, the client pays fees when we begin working together. By doing so, we’re telling you that we’re going to put all of our efforts into your adoption. Paying your adoption fees in advance also means that you’re willing to make yourself available to consider every one of the birth mother situations we present to you. When you have the commitment like this coming on both sides, the adoption will succeed.
Some will argue against paying an adoption agency in advance, and say things like “But if we pay up front, the agency has no incentive.” If your adoption professional has a good track record and wants to keep it that way, they need to keep their clients satisfied! At Lifetime Adoption Agency, this has always been our incentive.
Another agency, such as the one your friend is contracted with, might ask you to pay a small fee up front. A second fee is due once they match, and a third fee is due once their child comes home. We’ve found that this fee structure actually works against the adoptive couple.
The agency is motivated to get you a match, even if it’s not a solid one. If the adoption falls through or the birth mother reclaims her baby, you don’t get a refund on that match fee. The next time they have a match for you, you’ll need to pay again.
It’s best to find an adoption agency that will charge you one flat fee for the work it does to find you a child. You need an agency that will work with you for a set period of time, or until a match is found.