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If you’re thinking of adopting a child in Texas, you probably know there is a long road ahead of you. While the process can be complex, having the right information will help you navigate it successfully and with as little stress possible. Parents answers the following questions to ensure you understand what it takes to adopt a child and are fully prepared to do so.

What information should I provide?

The home study is an integral aspect of the adoption process. For the home study you’ll need to provide background information on you and your family, why you’re motivated to adopt, how the child will be incorporated into the family, where you’re employed, financial status, educational background, and a criminal background check. You may also be asked to provide references, which can be personal and professional.

How long does the process take?

How long an adoption takes typically depends on a few different factors. Some may be as short as six months while others can take up to a year. International adoptions can take even longer, with some going beyond a year before they can be finalized. You’ll also be able to choose between going through an agency or individual, which can affect the adoption timeline as well.

Can I adopt if I’m not married?

There is no requirement that a person must be married in order to adopt. However, many agencies prefer that two parents are involved in the process, as this is thought to be better for a child’s overall development. If you’re single, you may need to show the adoption agency that you have a strong social network that can assist you in raising a child in a loving environment.