October 20, 2006, Newsletter Issue #5: How to Organize a Gay Adoption

Tip of the Week

The first step when deciding to adopt is to investigate the adoption laws of your state and country. The laws regarding gay and lesbian adoption vary from country to country. Most of Western Europe allowed gay couples to adopt, and many of the states in Canada and the US have laws allowing gay adoption. Only three states in Australia< allow gay adoption.

In the US, some courts have begun to apply a "best interest of the child" idea in deciding cases. Over 22 states have allowed gay and lesbian adoption of children through state-run adoption centres or private adoption agencies.

The next step in the process is to decide whether to go through state agencies or approach a private adoption agency. The state process involves a lot of red tape, but is guaranteed legal in every country.

Private adoption agencies can be expensive and it is important to ensure the adoptions are legal. Similarly, international adoption is possible, but very expensive. Check your country's adoption laws very carefully to ensure that as a gay couple you can bring a child into the country.

Gay couples have adopted children for a very long time through deception, but it is important to be absolutely honest in the adoption process. Assuring a legal adoption will keep your child safe. Even if you are unable to adopt as a same-sex couple, it may be possible for one partner to adopt and the other to have rights to the child as a stepchild. To estimate your chances of getting a gay adoption in your country, look at local gay adoption statistics.

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