An Often Asked Adoption Question (reposted from Dixie's page on May 25, 2011)

I’m rerunning this post because I’ve run into a number of these type of situations again lately. Dixie gives some solid advice.

At least once a week, we receive requests from adoptive parents to help them finish their adoptions that have been started with other orphanages. They have met the children they want to adopt and usually are working with smaller orphanages that many times are unknown to me. They may have paid many thousands of dollars to the orphanage already but nothing has been done on their adoption!

In past years, I have helped people occasionally fix an adoption that has had problems, but it is very very difficult to finish an adoption that another orphanage has started. We have to be extremely careful that we do not offend other orphanage directors by trying to take over an adoption. We will never go and ask an orphanage director to allow us to finish an adoption for a family. The family only can ask and if the director says they will not transfer the child then there is nothing we can do.

My suggestions to families who have some how found a child to adopt in Haiti:

1. Research your orphanage. Make sure they have done several successful adoptions before you give them any money. If you are unsure, write to the US Consulate or go on the State Department Haiti web site and see if the orphanage is registered with IBESR and licensed to do adoptions. What do other adoptive families say about their experience with your chosen orphanage?

2. If you have trouble once you have given funds, then contact IBESR through a lawyer and report the problem. Report it also to the US Consulate Adoption section. Sometimes you can find a lawyer who might go on your behalf to the orphanage director and offer them assistance in completing the adoption. The US Consulate did have a list of adoption lawyers on their web site.

3. NEVER GIVE MONEY to any orphanage until you have done your research!

4. Check the fees of licensed orphanages doing adoptions in Haiti and make sure the orphanage you want to use is in the same range with their fees. Beware if their fees are too low. They may ask for a monthly child care fee that can run several thousands of dollars if the adoption takes several months.

5. NEVER GIVE MONEY to any orphanage until you have done your research!

6. Do not ask another orphanage to take over your adoption. It can cause lots of problems with IBESR and court action if another orphanage director feels an orphanage is trying to take their children! Talk to your chosen orphanage director and try to work out a solution to the problem. Talk to a Haitian lawyer. I can give you a name of someone who speaks English, if you are an English speaking adoptive parent. Let them handle it for you. They might be able to work out having the child transferred for you through IBESR.

7. I can’t emphasis it too much! NEVER NEVER NEVER GIVE MONEY to any orphanage until you have done your research!

An adoption is already extremely stressful for most families and they do not need thousands of dollars to disappear and have to start over with thousands more dollars to be paid to someone else!

Please research on the internet to get information about your chosen orphanage. Never give money until you have done lots of research. Make sure they are licensed for adoptions. If you do your research, your adoption will be a much more pleasant experience for you!

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