Each state’s adoption laws can vary, so it is important that if you are considering adopting a child in Connecticut that you become familiar with Connecticut’s adoption laws.
Connecticut adoption laws are in place to protect the birth parents, the prospective adoptive parents, and the child being adopted. You will want to find an adoption agency or an adoption lawyer who is very knowledgeable in the Connecticut adoption laws.
We will cover some of the legal specifics for those adopting in Connecticut involving newborn adoptions through the domestic adoption process, as well as adopting an infant or older child through the foster care system.
Click on the following to jump to an area of interest:
- Adoption Requirements in Connecticut
- Adoption Consent in Connecticut
- Connecticut Subsidies for Foster Care Adoption
- Connecticut Adoption Advertising Laws
- Birth Parent Expenses in Connecticut
- Accessing Adoption Records in Connecticut
- Post Adoption Contact Laws in Connecticut
- When are Adoption Birth Certificates Issued in Connecticut?
With so many aspects of Connecticut’s adoption laws and their corresponding policies, it is impossible to cover them all in one article. We will, however, dive into many facets of the adoption laws in Connecticut.
You are strongly encouraged to contact a licensed adoption agency or an adoption lawyer for specific adoption laws and policies in Connecticut, as laws and policies do change.
Can you adopt without a lawyer? How much do adoption attorneys cost? Learn all that and more by visiting Adoption Lawyers in Connecticut: Do You Need an Adoption Attorney? where we also give you step-by-step instructions on how to vet an adoption lawyer.
Adoption Requirements in Connecticut
- Must be 21 years of age or older.
- Stable and loving environment.
- Single and LGBT couples may adopt.
- Ability to satisfy financial needs.
- Background/FBI check is required.
- Home must have at least two bedrooms.
It is common knowledge that adoption is costly, but that is not to be confused with a false expectation that a prospective parent should be well off financially. Financial security is important and expected when applying to adopt a child, yet being upper class is not one of those qualifications.
Financial security simply means that you are able to pay your bills, cover your rent or mortgage, and that you have a reliable means of income and transportation. What matters most is that a child is loved, cared for, and kept safe and comfortable.
Learn more about adoption attorneys in our article What Does an Adoption Attorney Do? We Find Out.
Adoption Consent in Connecticut
Below is a summary including key points of the adoption consent laws in Connecticut put together for your convenience and is intended to be quicker to digest. For a complete listing of all adoption consent laws in its legal format and in its entirety, visit Connecticut Laws About Adoption, courtesy of Connecticut Branch Law Libraries.
It goes without saying that consent to adopt is a huge part of the adoption process. We may forget, however, that there is more involved than the birth mother’s consent.
Other aspect may come into play that you will want to keep in mind.
- The adoptee who is 12 years of age or older must give their consent to the adoption. An exception to this would be if the child is mentally incompetent.
- The presumed father has the right to consent to the adoption. See Connecticut Laws About Adoption for further details.
- The agency to which the adoptee has been relinquished or which holds permanent custody and which has placed the adoptee for adoption.
Connecticut Subsidies for Foster Care Adoption
Adoption assistance, otherwise know as adoption subsidies, is available for foster children in Connecticut who suffer from physical, mental, and developmental challenges.
These children are at a heightened risk of health problems, learning disabilities, as well as mental health issues. Subsidized adoption provides assistance to adoptive families for medical access, special equipment, therapies, tutoring, and other support services.
In the US, about 90% of the children in foster care are eligible for adoption assistance.
Special Needs Eligibility in Connecticut
A child with special needs may qualify for adoption assistance if the child meets one or more of the following circumstances, courtesy of NACAC.
- The child has documented emotional, physical, or mental issues by a physician or mental health professional.
- Two and older and racial or ethnic factors are becoming a barrier to being adopted.
- Siblings of two or more being placed for adoption in the same home at the same time.
- A child over the age of eight.
- Due to underlining issues in the past, the child is likely to suffer emotional, physical, or mental struggles in the future.
Connecticut Adoption Advertising Laws
Adoption advertising is defined as using a public medium to express an interest in adopting a child or sharing that a child is available for adoption either by print or electronically.
Common means of advertising include:
- Printed Flyers
According to the ChildWelfare.gov, the state of Connecticut allows birth parents to advertise through any public media in this State for the placement of his or her child for the purpose of adoption.
Any prospective adoptive parent may also advertise through any public media in this State for placement of a child into his or her care for the purpose of adoption.
Birth Parent Expenses in Connecticut
In all states, no person or agency is allowed to accept payment for assisting, placing, or organizing the placement of a child, as this is illegal.
There are some things, however, that adoptive parents may be allowed to pay for in Connecticut. These things include:
- Counseling, which is required within 72 hours of the child’s birth
- Maternity clothing
- Living expenses that do not exceed $1,500
- Telephone charges that are deemed reasonable
Your licensed adoption liaison will help to ensure that all financial aspects of the adoption process run smoothly and legally.
What do you do, though, if said expenses are paid and the birth mother changes her mind in the end? Adoption Disruption insurance is available for adoptive parents to protect them from such a misfortune for those adopting domestically.
See the Connecticut statute here.
Accessing Adoption Records in Connecticut
If the adoptee was born in Connecticut, he or she will want to visit their nearest State Vital Records Office and request a copy of their original birth certificate. The original birth certificate will include the adopted name, as well as the birth parent’s names and demographics.
If the adoptee was born in a different state other than Connecticut, they will need to reach out to the state in which they were born to request their original birth certificate, providing that state’s laws permit access to an adoptee’s original birth certificates.
If the person was born in another country, they may obtain a Certificate of Foreign Birth from the State Vital Records Office.
Reach out to Connecticut State Department of Public Health for more information.
Post Adoption Contact Laws in Connecticut
Adoptive parents have a right to decide who has contact with their adopted child and when. Many times in an open adoption, the adoptive parents and the birth family have a mutual and informal agreement regarding contact with the adopted child.
The state of Connecticut permits enforceable contact agreements granting postadoption visitation rights for birth parents of the adopted child.
If such agreement is requested, the courts must sign off on the arrangement verifying that this is in the best interest of the child and must be documented in writing by both the birth parents and the adoptive parents.
Courtesy of ChildWelfare.gov.
When are Adoption Birth Certificates Issued in Connecticut?
When your adoption is finalized, court proceedings should immediately include beginning the process of obtaining a new birth certificate for the adopted child that reflects the child’s new last name and adoptive parents.
Do not hesitate to ask your adoption attorney or adoption agency if you need to initiate that process, or if the courts will do that on your behalf.
DISCLAIMER: The above state law information is provided to our readers as a courtesy and is meant to be helpful in offering some insight as to what to expect during your adoption journey. This information is not meant to be viewed as legal advice. In addition, possible changes to state laws may have taken place since the publishing of this article in July 2021.