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Adoption Requirements in Arizona [A Complete Guide]

Have you thought about growing your family through adoption? If you have, then you need to understand the requirements for adoption in Arizona.

Adoption requirements in Arizona are necessary because they keep children safe while preparing you for life as a potential adoptive parent.

You may have questions about eligibility to adopt, such as:

  • Who can adopt a child in Arizona, and who cannot?

  • What is required to adopt a child in Arizona?

  • What are the Arizona adoption training requirements that you must meet?

  • Do they drug test for adoption in Arizona?

  • Do you have to be married to adopt in Arizona?

  • At what age can you adopt a child in Arizona?

One way to find answers to these questions is by contacting American Adoptions of Arizona. At American Adoptions, we’re here to help you navigate the requirements for adopting a child in Arizona. To speak with one of our experienced adoption specialists, you can get free online information here.

In the meantime, read more in this guide to learn what you should know about adoption requirements in Arizona.

Getting Started with Adoption Requirements in Arizona

Adoption offers a fulfilling method for family growth while providing a child a loving home. When beginning your adoption journey, you must define your goals and adoption wishes. Your American Adoptions specialist will assist you in setting your expectations for the adoption experience.

First, consider the steps in the adoption process and which type of adoption best matches your family. The requirements to adopt a child in Arizona differ in each case. Here are key factors to consider when beginning your adoption journey, such as:

Answering these questions marks the first step in your adoption journey, and your American Adoptions specialist will be there to guide you along the way.

What are the general legal requirements to adopt a child in Arizona?

The three primary types of child adoption in Arizona are private domestic adoption, foster care adoption and international adoption. Each has specific requirements. However, there are qualifications to adopt a child in Arizona that apply regardless of type.

American Adoptions specializes in facilitating successful private domestic adoptions, so we’ll focus on the requirements that apply to private domestic adoption in this guide.

Is being married one of the criteria for adopting a child in Arizona?

Arizona law doesn’t require prospective adoptive parents to be married. Single or unmarried parents can adopt if they meet the other adoption requirements. Single parent adoption is allowed under the requirements to adopt a child in Arizona, but that doesn’t mean that single parents are always able to adopt.

That’s because some private adoption agencies, like American Adoptions, may consider marriage as one of the in-house qualifications to adopt a child in Arizona. Individual agencies may have other requirements related to marriage. For instance, if a couple is married, an agency may prefer that the couple is married several years before adopting.

Also, Arizona adoptions requirements stipulate that, “If all relevant factors are equal and the choice is between a married man and woman certified to adopt and a single adult certified to adopt, placement preference shall be with a married man and woman.”

Therefore, while adoption by single parents may be allowed, you may have a harder time adopting if you’re not married. You can talk to your American Adoptions specialist to learn more about adoption if you’re planning on being a single parent.

A common question about the criteria for adopting a child in Arizona is whether same-sex couples can adopt. The answer is yes, same-sex couples in Arizona can adopt. Thanks to the Supreme Court’s groundbreaking Obergefell decision, same-sex adoption is now protected by federal law in every state.

However, same-sex couples that aren’t married may not be able to jointly adopt a child. Individual agencies might not be supportive of same-sex adoptions. Make sure to consider this factor when selecting an adoption agency. American Adoptions welcomes same-sex couple who want to adopt.

Is there a minimum or maximum age in the Arizona adoption requirements?

As with marriage, there is no legal stipulation regarding the age of the prospective adoptive parent, so long as the parent is an adult. There isn’t a maximum or minimum age set in the requirements to adopt a child in Arizona. However, adoption agencies in the state may consider the age of prospective adoptive parents when placing a child.

For example, American Adoptions prefers for prospective adoptive parents to be between 25 and 50. There are some exceptions made in special circumstances, so speak with an adoption specialist about the specific details of your situation.

Can an 18-year-old adopt a baby in Arizona? The answer is yes, at least in private domestic adoptions. But those adoptions aren’t common, and agencies may use judgment when determining the best placements for children.

Can a convicted felon adopt a child in Arizona?

According to the adoption requirements in Arizona,  a convicted felon can adopt a child in Arizona in some situations. However, that’s not always the case depending on the felony. There are certain types of offenses that may prevent prospective adoptive parents with felonies from adopting.

Adoption requirements in Arizona prohibit placement of a child with an adult (except a parent) who has been convicted of certain felony crimes such as assault, battery, human trafficking, sex trafficking, or drug offenses.

Completion of an adoption home study is one of the qualifications to adopt a child in Arizona. It includes a criminal background check to protect the safety of the child in the adoptive home.

If the home study background check reveals a record of violent crimes, domestic abuse, child neglect, sexual abuse or abandonment by anyone over the age of 14 in the household, it could disqualify a prospective adoptive family.

Prospective parents with felony convictions aren’t always prohibited from adopting according to Arizona adoption requirements. Adoption professionals and the courts can take into account the specific details of each adoption situation. However, it’s true that prospective parents with felonies may face more obstacles to adoption.

Are there other adoption requirements in Arizona?

Arizona adoption requirements establish some factors required for adoptive family eligibility. However, prospective adoptive parents need to know other things about adoption outside of the official criteria for adopting a child in Arizona.

The goal of most adoption agencies is to place children in safe, loving homes that will provide them with bright futures full of opportunities. That’s why there are some criteria not defined by the law that may be considered during the adoption process.

Health Considerations

Though not necessarily part of the adoption requirements in Arizona, your health is important when adopting. Raising a child can be physically taxing. Your health will play a role in the quality of life an adoptee will experience in your family.

The adoption home study portion of the requirements for adoption in Arizona includes a review of recent medical records. Adoption professionals may want to make sure you’re in good health, as your health can contribute to the stability of your home. Also, Arizona law prohibits discrimination against prospective adoptive parents who may have physical disabilities.

Financial Considerations

Arizona adoption requirements feature no official financial criteria for adopting a child in Arizona. But, your financial ability to care for a child may be a factor considered by adoption professionals.

The cost associated with adoption varies from one adoption to another. There’s also the ongoing cost of providing for the needs of a child. You don’t have to be wealthy to adopt, but you must be able to afford the costs associated with raising a child, such as food, shelter, and clothing.

If you’re between jobs, you may have wondered if you must be employed to adopt a child. The answer is no. Potential adoptive parents are rarely disqualified on financial grounds alone. Whether you’re employed or not, if you can meet your family’s financial obligations, you are eligible to adopt.

Emotional Considerations

At American Adoptions, the goal of your adoption specialist is to place children in stable and loving homes where they will be nurtured. Therefore, the emotional environment of your adoptive home must be assessed.

Though it’s not covered in the legal requirements for adoption in Arizona, you and your adoption specialist should ensure you’re emotionally prepared for the adoption process. To evaluate your own emotional preparedness to adopt, you may want to consider the following:

  • Address past disappointments with infertility or miscarriage: Don’t let past experiences color your future when adopting. If you’ve experienced miscarriages or infertility, try to process your emotions and move on from your grief. This process can take years, and it’s okay to take your time.

  • Understand the adoption process: Comprehending the legal requirements for adoption in Arizona is important. It’s also important to understand the emotions you may experience during your adoption journey. Join a support group and consult your adoption specialist when setting your expectations. Remember, we’re here to help.

  • Communicate with your spouse: Adoption is a monumental responsibility. If you’re married, make sure you and your spouse are both fully invested. Communicate honestly and vocalize any concerns. When you adopt, move forward together.

  • Accept the responsibility: Everyone in your family needs to comprehend the responsibility that comes with adoption. It’s a lifetime commitment, and everyone involved must be on board. Speak openly with one another and don’t move forward until everyone is prepared to open your home.

Your Next Steps

Adoption can offer you a fulfilling path to family growth. It’s also a great way to give a home to a waiting child. Protecting the child is critical throughout the process, which is why the Arizona adoption requirements were created.

Understanding adoption requirements in Arizona requires research and counseling. At American Adoptions, our staff is here to help you wade through the process and comprehend your role in it. We’ll be with you every step of the way, as your success is our success.

To learn more about who can adopt in Arizona and what will be required as you navigate your adoption journey, get free information here.

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