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Foster to Adopt in California [How to Prepare]

The Journey from Foster Home to Adoption in California

There are many paths you can take when it comes to adoption. Although we are an affiliate of a private domestic infant adoption agency, we understand this journey is unique for everyone.

For some hopeful adoptive families, a private adoption professional is not always right for their preferences.

At American Adoptions of California, it’s our goal to help you find the type of adoption that is best suited for your life, whether you want a private adoption or you’re interested in fostering before adoption in California.

We created this guide to help you decide if adopting a child you’re fostering in California is right for you. We’ll give you  an in-depth look at what adoption and fostering to adopt in California entail.  

To get more free information now on fostering before adoption in California, you can fill out our online form to connect with a professional today.

What is Foster Care? [How to Foster to Adopt in California]

Foster care adoption can be a wonderful way to start or grow your family.

Understanding how foster care adoption differs from domestic infant adoption is vital before you choose which path to take.

Here are a few unique aspects of the foster care system:

  • A child’s reunification with their biological parents is the eventual goal. 

  • Adopting a child you are fostering is possible if a judge terminates parental rights. 

  • Foster care typically involves older children, sibling pairs, children with disabilites or children who have experienced neglect and trauma. 

The purpose of foster care is to provide a child with a safe, temporary home until a decision is made as to whether a child’s biological family can parent them again.

If the biological parents can’t meet the judge’s specific reunification guidelines and the judge terminates the parental rights, then the foster family can then foster to adopt in California.

At this point, the family can then adopt the child they have been fostering. But, if the foster family decides against that, the child remains with the state until there is a willing adoptive family. 

If fostering a child is an option you would like to explore, then you can contact one of the foster care agencies in California below:

To find information on a specific foster care provider in California, you can start with the National Foster Care and Adoption Directory Search or California’s Department of Social Services website.

Foster Care Adoption Requirements in California

As you may have guessed, there is a process involved in becoming a certified foster parent before adoption in California.

When you take on the responsibility of caring for a child in the foster care system, you must assume that they have experienced some past trauma in their life. Because of this, you will need to undergo some required training designed to help you support them appropriately.

This training will prepare you for common obstacles and equip you with the resources you need to develop a healthy relationship with your child.

In California, you will complete the new RFA (Resource Family Approval) Program before you can be approved to provide foster care. After completing this program, you won’t have to earn any further credentials if you choose to adopt.

Applicants for California foster care parenting must:

  • Be at least 18 years of age

  • Attend an orientation

  • Submit an application

  • Attend pre-approval training

  • Become certified in CPR and first aid

Also, you will have to complete a home study in California. Home studies are designed to assess the quality of life offered to a child in a particular home. They involve:

  • Background checks

  • Financial evaluations

  • Interviews

  • Home visits

  • And more

Can You Foster Only to Adopt in California?

Depending on the California foster care adoption you are pursuing, there are two distinct paths you can take:

1. Fostering Before Adoption in California

Many families who are interested in adoption from a foster agency start their journey by becoming foster parents.

This can be a good way for people who want to adopt to determine if foster care adoption is right for them. But, in most cases, the child is reunited with their biological parents, so you may only foster the child.

2. Adopting Straight from Foster Care

When families adopt from foster care without first fostering, this is known as “straight adoption.” This type of adoption is possible only when the parental rights of a child have been terminated.

The adoption process, in this case, involves the hopeful adoptive family viewing profiles of eligible children and working with an agency to facilitate the adoption.

People from all backgrounds consider adopting through foster care. For those still on the fence about choosing foster care adoption in California, foster care adoption is ideal for:

No matter the case, there are thousands of children ready to be welcomed into your family.

California Children in Foster Care

Often, children in foster care who are waiting for a permanent, loving home have a diability. Many of these children are also older or part of a sibling group.

The age of children in foster care ranges anywhere from 1 to 21 years old. Children between 6 and 11 make up the majority of the system.

There are about 60,000 children in the California foster care system.  Many of these children have had traumatic childhood experiences and need the support and love of a family.

Adopting a baby from foster care is rare, so if you would like to adopt an infant, you may consider a private domestic adoption professional, which exclusively facilitates infant adoption.

If you are still unsure which type of adoption is best for you, then you can contact us online to get free information now.

Information available through these links is the sole property of the companies and organizations listed therein. American Adoptions provides this information as a courtesy and is in no way responsible for its content or accuracy.

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