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What are the adoption criteria in Tennessee?

If you are a Tennessee resident thinking about adopting a child, you will be glad to know that the criteria are fairly simple. For instance, you can be single, married or divorced and you do not need to own your own home. You can be working full time and you may or may not already have children. The only real criteria are that you be at least 21 years of age, a resident of the State of Tennessee and able to meet the financial and emotional needs of your existing and potential family.

The Tennessee Department of Children’s Services recommends asking yourself the following questions before you consider adopting a child:

  • Am I a secure person who is satisfied with my life and my family as they exist now?
  • Do I have a good support system of family and friends who can help me out if and when I need them to do so?
  • Do I have the patience to wait for my adopted child to return my love?
  • Am I flexible enough to be able to handle whatever surprises and unexpected situations might arise with my adopted child?
  • Will I feel comfortable if and when my adopted child wants to talk about his or her biological parents and/or about foster parents or others who have cared for him or her in the past?

Adopting through the Department of Children’s Services

If you wish to be considered as a prospective adoptive parent for a child who is in the guardianship of Children’s Services, you need to have a home study performed by a licensed child placement agency and then submit that home study for a specific child. It is possible for you to identify a specific child through Adopt US Kids or the Heart Gallery of Tennessee. While this information should not be taken as legal advice, it can help you understand the process and what to expect.

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