Home Study and Post Placement Supervision

An approved Home Study is required for all adoption placements in the United States. Every state requires specific criteria for Home Study Approval; they are very similar with some minimal differences. 

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Florida Adoption Center provides home study services and post-placement supervision services.; whether it is an independent home study for use in a private adoption through an attorney, an adoption for a child residing in foster care, and of course, for use in an adoption facilitated through the Florida Adoption Center.

Once a child is placed with your family, Florida requires post-placement supervision visit/contact to occur every 30 days and each calendar month until the adoption is finalized. The first three visits must be in person, and both adoptive parents must be present for the first visit. After the first three visits, contact must be made (but a visit isn’t required) every 30 days, and FAC must be e-mailed to update the placement. During post-placement supervision visits, the Adoptive Family will be encouraged to discuss any adjustment problems or other issues of concern so that resources can be provided to help the family with the adjustment. At these visits, milestones, development, and medical visits are discussed. All post-placement supervision Reports are sent to the Court. These reports detail how the family is adjusting and how the child grows in the adoptive parents’ care. The home study and these reports are what the Judge will use to decide on finalization. Typically, finalizations are occurring between 120-150 days depending on court schedules.

What is a Home Study?

The Home Study is an assessment incorporating information on the applicant’s moral character, criminal history, background checks, references, familial status, health information, and much more. In addition, the Home Study includes a detailed psychosocial assessment and two site visits to the Adoptive Parent’s home. All the above information is incorporated into one document for presentation to the Court. This document is a detailed report prepared by Agency staff and approved by our Managing Director.

The Home Study is a process that requires three or more face-to-face meetings with prospective Adoptive Parents. These meetings take place both in our offices and in your home. Information is gathered, and a report is produced, which will eventually be presented to the Judge who will finalize the adoption.

The Home Study report contains detailed information about the Adoptive Family.

Some of the documentation you will be asked to provide includes:

  • Copy of Driver’s License and Social Security Cards 
  • Birth, Marriage, and Divorce Certificates as applicable
  • Background checks, to include Federal, State, Local, Child Abuse Registry, Sex Offender Registry, and DCF Affidavit of Good Moral Characters
  • Financial Information, Earnings, Savings, Investments, W2, 1040 Tax Form
  • Physicals for everyone in the household, shot records (for minors), Letters of treatment from counselors
  • Proof of Medical Insurance
  • Vehicle Registration and proof of insurance
  • Copy of Deed or Lease/Rental Agreement
  • Employment Verification and reference from your employer
  • (4) Personal References
  • References from school officials for any school-age children you have living in your home
  • Pictures of Prospective Adoptive Family, Pictures of Home, Floor Plan
  • Pet Information, including Vaccination Records

(The list above is representative of the documentation required but is not intended to be an exhaustive list).

In addition to the items above, you will also be asked to fill out to following forms by FAC:

  • Confidential Home Study Inventory
  • Child Abuse Hotline Record Search
  • Affidavit of Good Moral Character
  • Medical Reports for adults and children, completed by the doctor’s office
  • Employment Reference Letter (to be completed by employer)
  • Family Financial Statement
  • Reference Letters (to be sent directly to HS agency)
  • Guardianship Designation Statement
  • Arrest Disposition (If necessary)
  • Training Certificates, to include CPR and Baby Care class
  • DCF Firearms Safety Form
  • DCF Adoptive Home Application

(The list above represents the required forms but is not intended to be an exhaustive list).

In addition to providing the above information, we also include a detailed psychosocial assessment of the Prospective Adoptive Family. A staff member will visit you in your home; we will interview each family member and explore your living circumstances, marital status, previous marriages, other children, parenting and discipline styles, and family belief systems. The Home Study involves two site visits to your home to ensure you have room for your new family member and verify residency and safety. During the home visit, we will ask you to provide a floor plan, pictures of your family, and an evacuation plan. Our staff member asks you to take photographs of each room, plus the front and back of the property and yard, and provide for the home study. These photos do not need to be printed on photo paper. They can be printed multiple pictures on a sheet, as long as they are clear.

Please be aware that Home Study Approval is not guaranteed. We will advise you of Approval in writing.

This process may seem daunting or scary, but we are here to walk you through the process and will make it as easy and stress-free as possible. During the Home Study process, it is important to be open and honest with your Adoption Specialist. Everyone involved works hard to ensure successful adoption.

Ready To Get Started With Your Home Study?

E-mail us at Office@FloridaAdoptionCenter.com to schedule an orientation. Once completed, a Home Study Documentation Checklist can be found on our Forms page. This checklist itemizes all the information needed to start the Home Study process. Please refer to the checklist and the instructions. Copies of the required forms from the checklist are also available on our Forms page.

Home Study Need Updating?

The Home Study has to be kept current to remain eligible for adoption. An update must be completed annually. However, a change in family circumstances, someone new living in the home, job change, divorce, or significant health changes must all be documented in your home study as an addendum between updates. For an addendum, reach out to your home study specialist to find your next steps. For an update, download the Home Study Update Documentation Checklist from our Forms page to get started.

Already Have a Home Study?

Great, we welcome Prospective Adoptive Parents with a current Home Study produced by another agency. Download the Waiting Family Welcome Packet to get started. We can also review your Florida Home Study and update it if necessary. Please E-mail us for more information on the process.

After the Home Study – Expectant Parent Matching

Expectant Parents have the right to choose a family for their child. However, as Adoptive Parents, you have the right to be provided with all available information to make an informed decision. The Agency gathers all available information on Expectant Parents’ physical and mental health history and that of direct family members. Some of this information is self-reported, but we also obtain medical records where possible and require drug testing of our expectant mothers. We encourage Expectant Parents to provide information about illegal and prescription drug use, and alcohol use, both before conception and during pregnancy.

Expectant Parents are encouraged to take an active part in the selection process of the Adoptive Family. We encourage all members of the Adoption Triad to meet, get to know each other, and form a bond. We will provide guidance to help you prepare your family profile which we will use to present you to the expectant parents.

Typically, we work with expectant parents for some time and offer resources to ensure all options are considered before deciding on an adoption plan. When ready, we will develop an Expectant Parent Match Summary, identify the waiting families that meet the same criteria as the expectant family and send it via e-mail for possible match opportunities. We will also send a text to alert you to check your e-mail. The e-mail will include all information gathered about the potential match and a budget. To move forward to the possible match, send an e-mail, and we will respond once it is received.  

Emotional Support

When families decide to adopt, they have frequently spent years trying to conceive a biological child. Adoption is a way to fulfill the dream of parenthood. We recognize that many prospective Adoptive Parents have experienced a roller coaster ride of hopes, dreams, and disappointments. This range of powerful emotions and often years of hoping and wishing can be mentally and emotionally exhausting, which is why we are committed to providing emotional support throughout the process. It is our goal to create families in a loving and nurturing way, and we commit to providing ongoing emotional support for our families whenever needed.