Adoption is often a complex process. Not only are there various emotions at play, but practical concerns as well. In many cases, adoptive parents wish to help a birth mother with expenses relating to the pregnancy. Such an arrangement can help birth mothers feel more secure as well as give adoptive parents a chance to be involved before the child is born.
Adoptive parents can provide for certain costs
Florida adoption laws restrict the financial assistance adoptive parents can provide to birth mothers. Adoptive parents can assist with reasonable living expenses and necessary medical expenses during the pregnancy and for up to six weeks after the child is born. These costs might include rent, utilities, food, transportation, and insurance.
Other adoption expenses adoptive parents can cover include:
- Court costs
- Costs related to birth certificates and medical records
- Professional services such as counseling or legal representation
- Home study fees
Keep in mind: Under Florida law, even if potential adoptive parents pay for living or medical expenses, a birth mother is not legally obligated to sign the consent for adoption after the child is born.
Limits on financial assistance for birth mothers
Although many adoptive parents are happy to provide for a birth mother’s needs, adoption laws in Florida do place limits on some expenses, such as:
- Medical bills or living expenses exceeding $5,000
- Court costs over $800
- Legal or other professional fees over $5,000
However, adoptive parents can pay for expenses exceeding these levels with court approval.
For help understanding how adoptive and birth parents can share costs, consult with a Florida adoption attorney. A legal representative can help you manage the extensive paperwork involved in tracking expenses and creating an adoption agreement that works for everyone.