Adoptions With Love Blog

Navigating the Adoption Process in Virginia: A Comprehensive Guide

The State of Virginia is known in the history books as “the birthplace of a nation.” If you are facing an unplanned pregnancy and living in the state, you may not be thinking about those history books. Instead, you may be thinking about the impending birth of your child and what you will do after the birth. One of these options you may be considering: Adoption. This is a positive choice, but it can also be a daunting decision. You may be looking for information on the Virginia adoption process.

The first thing to remember is that you are not alone. There are plenty of Virginians who have walked – or are currently walking – in your shoes. Nearly half of all U.S. pregnancies each year are unplanned. You may not have planned for this pregnancy, but you are planning for the life of your child now. You are the one in charge of this pregnancy, and the choice is yours. No one can make it for you. If you are looking to learn more about the Virginia adoption process, read on. In this short guide, we will share the steps to take when making an adoption plan in the Old Dominion.

  1. Learn About Your Adoption Options

It is wise, when considering adoption, to contact a fully licensed adoption agency for some information. Speaking with a professional does not mean you must choose adoption. A reputable organization, such as Adoptions With Love, can provide you with the unbiased information you need about each of your options, which are:

  • Parenthood
  • Adoption
  • Termination

Only you can determine which path is best for you and your baby. If you wish to make an adoption plan in Virginia…

  1. Choose an Adoption Agency in Virginia

The first real step to “give baby up for adoption” in Virginia is to choose an adoption agency with whom you can trust. This step is crucial for a few reasons:

  • An adoption agency will ensure your child’s adoption is handled legally and safely.
  • An adoption agency will prioritize your health and well-being.
  • A fully licensed private adoption agency like Adoptions With Love can offer financial support, continuous counseling, and free legal services.

Adoption is a complicated, emotional journey. Remember, you are not giving up a baby but rather you are making an informed and brave decision about your baby and your life. An adoption agency can offer you free supportive services to help you every step of the way.

  1. Learn About Adoption Plans Offered in Virginia

Before making your adoption plan in Virginia, you will want to understand the different types of adoption plans available. There are three basic types of adoption plans:

  • Open
  • Semi-open
  • Closed

Most adoptions today are open adoptions. This may look different for every family. With an open adoption, there is ongoing communication between birth and adoptive families. Your adoption agency can help you determine the best plan for you. Do you wish to stay connected with your child’s family via email? Phone calls and in-person visits are an option, as well. The form and frequency of communication is up to you, but your adoption specialist can help you find the best fit that will meet your needs.

  1. Choose an Adoptive Family for Your Baby

As an expectant/birth parent considering adoption, you are already placing the needs of your child before your own. You want to ensure that your child is  going to a home that makes you feel comfortable. One of the best ways to get that peace of mind is by selecting the adoptive family. Only you can know what is right for your child. You have the power to select the adoptive family. Your adoption professional can show you profiles of the many families looking to adopt a child. You can look through photo albums and read letters written by potential parents. You can speak with them, and meet with them in person before your baby is born.

  1. Understand Virginia’s Adoption Laws

Adoption laws vary by state and can be confusing. It is important to work with a fully licensed Virginia adoption agency that can walk you through the process and offer you free legal support. The Virginia adoption attorney team at Adoptions With Love is experienced with adoption and can help you navigate this journey. Still, you will want to have some basic understanding of your rights as an expectant/birth parent.

In Virginia, birth mothers may not sign consent forms for adoption until after the child’s third calendar day of life. Once signed, these forms are taken to court, where a judge serves as a witness to the consent.

The wait time for signing adoption papers is a positive. This waiting period gives birth mothers time to spend with their babies and think about their choice. Adoption is a lifelong decision. You should be completely certain you are making the best possible choice before signing your consent forms.

  1. Create a Hospital Plan

Being a birth mother means having the right to determine the birthing experience. Who do you want in the delivery room with you? Will you want to be the first person to hold your child? Would you like the adoptive parents there? Do you think you will want time alone with the baby after birth? These are just a few questions to ask yourself when making a hospital plan. Your adoption specialist can help guide you to create a plan that best meets your needs.

  1. Create a Post-Adoption Plan

As mentioned above, you can choose the type of adoption plan you wish to create in Virginia. This is when you will consider the form and frequency of ongoing contact. These elements of the plan are completely up to you. Whether you choose open adoption, semi-open adoption, or closed adoption, you can custom design a plan that will make you feel comfortable and confident about your decision.

Contact Adoptions With Love to Learn More

An unplanned pregnancy can be a scary experience, but you do not have to face it alone. There are resources to help, including Virginia adoption agencies. Whether you live in Arlington, Chesapeake, Norfolk, Richmond, Virginia Beach, or anywhere in between, you can rest assured that an adoption attorney will provide you with the assistance you deserve.

If you would like to meet with an adoption professional for more information and learn even more about the Virginia adoption process, contact Adoptions With Love today. Call us at 800-722-7731, text us confidentially at 617-777-0072, or email us. We can help guide you every step of the way.