Has anyone used American Adoption Agency? I've been to some local info sessions with agencies in Virginia but they all have very long wait times and I've had some phone interviews with agencies like AdoptHelp and ANLC but American Adoption has stayed at the top of the list.
Does anyone have any opinions on this agency?
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11-16-2009, 07:43 PM #1ahenRegistered Userhas no status.
- Join Date
- Nov 2009
- northern virginia
American Adoption Agency, Any Opinions?
01-28-2010, 02:04 PM #2b66Registered Userhas no status.
- Join Date
- Jan 2010
I'm looking at the same agencies you are....ANLC and American. Any feedback?
best of luck
01-28-2010, 02:55 PM #3
ANLC is NOT an agency, they are a law firm. The difference is in the adoption process and how the fees are charged. American is one of the largest and most aggressive agencies with advertising however at least a few years ago (ten) they were not the most progressive and you should search birth parent bbs to see what they have to say about them. Maybe things have improved greatly but when we looked their rep with birth parents was not very good.
ANLC is seriously doing a whole lot of advertising which can mean faster placement. The more an adoption professional is noticed the more word of mouth, the more birth families call. The draw back is that that advertising costs money and that is usually passed on to YOU the adoptive parent. You should also be aware that independent adoption in this state (California) carry some risks that agency adoptions don't. The revocation period is longer and any money lost in a failed situation is considered a gift to the birth family or legitimate fees paid to professional. We have done two independent adoptions and are willing to take certain risks but you should really understand the difference before giving anyone the kind of money they ask for upfront. Also CA independent adoptions assume that birth parents are making the decisions about placement themselves, without an agency, therefore they have the absolute right to your information. Independent adoptions are fully disclosed adoptions. Now I three fully open adoptions where the birth families know us, met us and know how to contact us. That was a choice we made and think for our family it is best but for those new to adoption that idea can be scary. CA+Attorney assisted adoption= full disclosure.
Because we had full disclosure we wanted a much higher level of counseling then the law requires. Open adoptions are a delicate balancing act and I find that agency professionals have gotten very good at educating, advocating for, supporting and when needed mediating thru the process. Again when you use only an Attorney there is no requirement of that level of service or on going service which is something that most agencies provide for life. Like I said we have done two attorney assisted adoptions and if we were not done that is the way I would go again BUT we used agency resources for education, counseling and support. We were lucky that our Attorney's actually found us agencies that helped with all of that and made the process not only smooth but we were sure that the birth families were well cared for.
I would think that if you are going to engage an agency you should check out the ones closet to you first. When you use an out of state agency you still need to pay for a home study in your state AND your fees are doubled, plus you have travel expenses. Our third adoption cost half as much as our fourth, the difference? We went out of state so we had to pay two agencies, two Attorneys and travel expenses and last minute travel (you don't know when a baby will be born so last minute airfares can hurt).
Sometimes the very best agency for you is clear across the country but, given that there are literally over a thousand agencies in this country checking out the local ones makes sense, you might find a gem in your own backyard or in a neighboring state where you travel expenses will be lessened. In fact there are several Attorneys who are licensed in their state and the neighboring state which can save you money as well. When we adopted our first child we lived in RI, we noticed that many Attorneys were licensed in both RI and MA and many agencies had relationships with agencies in both MA and CT. So looking locally may not reduce your options.
Lastly the ability to work with out of state entities erally depends on the laws of your state. You can adopt a child from any state in the union but how that adoption works is based on the laws in your state. Some states don't allow the use of Attorneys, some don't allow the used of third party match makers or advertising. Another good reason to look locally first is that you get a good idea what is legal where you are before you start looking in other places. That way you have a better idea of where to look (states and or professional that fall in line with the process in your state).
Hope this helpsLisa
Mom to Nathan (23) Anna Rachel (20) Sam (13) and Miranda (9)
Nola the Ridgeback/ Pit Bull mix and all cuddle bug
Roxy Hart the Chihuahua/Yorkie watch dog
Nemesis the long haired tabby who IS the boss of all of us
Nox Juju Black shelter kitty who adopted us all
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