To adopt a child, you will need to have an adoption home study completed by an agency licensed in your state. The home study is designed to assess the prospective adoptive family in a process that explores their home, life experiences, health, lifestyle, extended family, attitudes, support system, values, beliefs, and other factors relating to the prospective adoption. This information is summarized in a home study report. See the home study process for more detailed information about what to expect.

For assistance or information on adoption in your state, contact your state's Adoption Specialist. He or she should provide you with a list of licensed adoption agencies and appropriate resources in your area. Also, look up "Adoption" or "Social Services" in the telephone book yellow pages for local adoption agencies, advocates, attorneys, support groups, and much more.