Adoption can be a dream come true for couples. Adding one or an additional member to the family is a time of joy, happiness and hope for many families. It is also a happy time for children if they are old enough to understand what is happening. If they are newborns, it is still a momentous occasion and the beginning of a hopeful and bright future for the child.
The adoption process can also be legally complex and costly. This is especially true in a private adoption, where a couple works through an agency or with an attorney to adopt a child from a birth mother who chooses to give her child up for adoption through the courts. The adoptive parents usually cover most of the birth mother’s prenatal care expenses and the adoption expenses.
There are ways to help decrease these costs in North Carolina, among them:
- Government Assistance Programs for Adoption. This program was established in 1997 by the government to incentivize parents to adopt a child or children.
- North Carolina state subsidies. The state offers unique benefits and assistance if the child is six years or older and has a qualifying condition or circumstance listed under this law.
- Employer Sponsorships. Many employers offer financial adoption assistance as part of their benefits package. Check with your employer to ask if this benefit is available.
- Federal Tax Credits. Adoptive parents qualify for tax credits when filing taxes in the state. For 2023, the credit limit is slightly under $16,000 for adoptive parents making less than $240,000.
- Gifts from family members, contributions from friends, fundraisers, savings or grants. Organizations sometimes offer adoption grants, and these do not need to be paid back.
Adopting a child can be a dream come true for a couple and a child. It can open doors for a child they would otherwise not have access to. It also comes with a financial cost. Understanding those costs and how you will finance the adoption as you plan your adoption journey is essential.