Q: If a baby is abandoned right after birth by the mother, is there a way to adopt that child?
A: Yes, there is a way to adopt that child. The specifics might change depending on the state involved, but the basic process is usually the same. First, the county child welfare office (DSS, DYFS, or whatever it is called where you live) would take guardianship of the child. Likely, the child would be placed in a foster home while the mother’s identity is determined. Once the mother is identified (leaving out whether the police might be involved for child endangerment, attempted homicide, etc.) DYFS must first determine if it is in the best interest of the child to go back to the mother. They might decide that they need to work with the mother to help her get her act together before a decision can be made. At the same time, they would usually also try to identify the birth father and determine if it is in the best interest of the child for the birth father to have custody. If not, DYFS will almost always look to extended family members that might want to have guardianship or adopt this child.
If that is not possible, then they will seek an adoptive family for the child. If the child was placed in a “foster to adopt” foster home (a family that has expressed an interest in adopting their foster children) then that family is usually considered first.Image credit: nexus6
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