Adopting a child in Tennessee can change the lives of both the parents and the children they bring into their families. Deciding to pursue adoption requires a big commitment, but it does not require that you become the perfect parent overnight.
Knowing where to start on the path to adoption is a challenge, but here are some tips to help those interested prepare financially, emotionally and legally.
1. Find out if you meet state requirements
In Tennessee, there are certain requirements that a person must meet to be eligible to adopt. They include being at least 18 years old and having residency in the state for at least six consecutive months. To adopt from foster care, the following requirements are necessary:
- Full-time employment
- Own or rent a home
- At least 21 years old
- Can meet financial and emotional needs of current family
What does not disqualify someone for adoption is his or her marital status and whether or not he or she has other children.
2. Prepare financially
Private adoptions can be very expensive, so it is important to save accordingly. Without adequate financial means, you will not be able to add another child to your family, however, you do not have to be wealthy to adopt.
3. Complete a home study
Tennesse law requires potential adoptive parents to undergo a home study. This allows the state to determine if they have the means and ability to successfully raise another child in a loving environment.
Adoption can be a long process, but you can take that time to ensure you are as prepared as possible to provide a forever home to a child in need.