In order for any adoption to proceed in the United States, prospective adoptive parents must complete a home study. Not only will this process assess your parenting abilities, particularly with an adopted child, but it will also give you a greater understanding of the nature of adoption in general.
Let’s discuss how you can get started with the home study process. Each state’s requirements are slightly different, so it’s always a good idea to consult with your adoption attorney or adoption professional when decided what kind of home study you want to do. They are excellent resources and will help you guide you step-by-step, and answer any questions you have along the way.
Colorado State Qualifications
Anyone looking to adopt in Colorado must meet specific requirements. Candidates — both prospective adoptive and foster parents — must be at least 21 years of age. Singles, married couples and members of the LGBT community are permitted to adopt.
All prospective parents must be able in overall good health, and be able to support the child physically and financially. They will also be required to complete 16 hours of face-to-face pre-adoption CORE training classes. Adoption Choices offers these state mandated trainings once a month. The classes will help provide insight and information into adoption, and better prepare the prospective candidates to parent an adopted child.
Other state requirements include, but are not limited to, passing a criminal background check and child abuse screening, along with sex offender clearances.
Home Studies in Colorado
Since 2005, home studies in Colorado are performed using the SAFE system, which stands for Structured Analysis Family Evaluation. In short, SAFE permits child placement agencies to effectively and systematically evaluate prospective adoptive parents. Using research-based tools, SAFE home studies provide a step-by-step and easy to understand process for all licensed and agencies in Colorado. This not only allows adoption professionals to focus on any real issues or concerns throughout the process, but it also keeps prospective adoptive parents more accountable.
Home studies performed through the SAFE system help reveal the strengths of prospective adoptive parents and where they need to improve when it comes to future parenting, among other things. Without this thorough and essential analysis, important details can be overlooked and create potential risks later on. For instance, a family could be placed with a child that exceeds their emotional and physical capabilities. As a result, a risk of abuse or other issues of concern can occur.
SAFE ensures that both prospective adoptive parents and adopted children are well suited for each other before placement.
Agency Home Study
In accordance with Colorado state law, licensed home study providers are required to conduct a certain number of home visits and interviews. Included in the process is a walk-through of the home and safety inspection. This is required to ensure the safety and best interest of both the prospective adoptive parents and the child.
The meetings involve three joint interviews with the couple, and an individual interview with each family member or individual residing in the home. When the home study is complete, state regulations do not permit prospective adoptive parents to have a copy of their home studies. They can, instead, come to the agency and review the proposed draft, and suggest changes before it is finalized.
The home study process can take from 2-3 months to complete.
Adoption Choices of Colorado
For any questions, concerns or additional information regarding your personal circumstances, please reach out to your adoption attorney or local agency.
Adoption Choices of Colorado adheres to the SAFE format with all home studies conducted. All of our caseworkers are trained through the Colorado Department of Human Services. Our compassionate team of professionals have numerous years of experience in conducting home studies, and are non-judgmental and cooperative. Several of our caseworkers are, in fact, adoptive parents themselves. Together, our goal and philosophy at Adoption Choices is to provide the most positive, educational and informative experience possible.
For more information on adoption please contact Adoption Choices of Colorado. We can reached via our website or phone 303-670-4401.
Support Adoption Choices
Adoption Choices, Inc. is partnering with Crowdrise, a fundraising website for nonprofits, to help our adoptive parents and birth parents with much needed financial assistance. We understand that expenses keep clients from fulfilling their dreams. Both with birth parents making a plan for adoption, and with adoptive parents growing their family. It is our mission to provide financial assistance through grants and scholarships, awarded annually in November, in honor of National Adoption Month. Funds assist adoptive parents with matching and placements, adoption finalization and helping birth mothers improve their lives through higher education — and much more.
But, we can’t do it alone. Please read up on our programs and donate money where you are able. Your donation will make a huge impact.
About the Author
Rachel Robertson is a published journalist, book editor, certified Publishing Specialist, and aspiring novelist. She graduated from Central Washington University (CWU) in March 2011, having found her writing voice within the Creative Nonfiction genre and grew to work as a freelance book editor for small presses all across the United States.
In June 2018, she embarked on an internship with Virginia Frank and came on board with Adoption Choices Inc., Not for Profit 501(c)(3), in December 2018. Between her mutual passion with adoption and surrogacy, and her own personal history with adoption, Rachel is excited to research and share topics each week that will spread awareness and better serve the faithful patrons of Adoption Choices Inc.
When Rachel isn’t haunting her local Starbucks or Barnes and Noble, she’s avidly pouring over her Writer’s Digest subscription or cozying up with a cup of tea and book. She currently resides in the beautiful Pacific Northwest with her beloved wife and Border Collie.
Adoptions, Lifelong. “Hopingto Adopt?” LifeLong Adoptions, www.lifelongadoptions.com/adoption-process/all-about-home-studies.
“How to Adopt in Colorado.” The Best Source for Adoption Information, consideringadoption.com/adoptions-by-state/how-to-adopt-in-colorado.
Parents. “All About Adoption Home Studies.” Parents, Parents, 5 Nov. 2018, www.parents.com/parenting/adoption/facts/all-about-adoption-home-studies/.
SAFE Home Study: Structured Analysis Family Evaluation, www.safehomestudy.org/Home.aspx.