Unfortunately, adoption scams and frauds are not uncommon. Adoption fraud can be perpetrated by a pregnant or supposedly pregnant women; by an adoption agency, attorney, or facilitator; or by adoptive parents.
An expectant, or supposedly expectant, woman can promise to place a child with an adoptive family for adoption with no intention of following through. She can make this promise in the hopes of getting money or support, or she may simply want the emotional connection. A prospective birth mother may also lie about risk factor the baby may have, such as drug or alcohol exposure.
An adoption agency, adoption attorney, or adoption facilitator can perpetuate a fraud on adoptive parents by charging exorbitant fees and then not providing the services promised, and by not disclosing all information about the child to the adoptive parent (also known as a fraudulent adoption).
Although not always classified as an adoption fraud, we believe that adoptive parents can also scam birth parents by making promises during the “courting phase” pre-adoption with little intention of following through. For example, adoptive parents who are not comfortable with an open adoption might promise continued contact after the baby is born, knowing that it will be hard for the birth parents to enforce. Also, some prospective adoptive parents lie about themselves in order to convince an expectant woman to pick them. For example, they may lie about their religious affiliation or involvement, or about whether the adoptive mother plans to return to work post adoption.
Creating a Family has many resources on adoption scams. A few we think you will find particularly helpful are:
- When You Find Out the Adoption “Story ” is Untrue (blog post)
- Avoiding Adoption Fraud or Adoption Scams (6 min. video)
- Top Ten Warning Signs for Adoption Fraud (fact sheet)
- Top Ten Tips for Avoiding a Birth Mother Adoption Scam (fact sheet)
- Adoption Scams – How to Recognize and Prevent (1 hr. radio show w/ guest experts)
Many more Creating a Family radio interviews with experts, videos, blogs, fact sheets, and Q and A’s with Experts on adoption fraud can be found at the icons below.
Image credit: Bored-Now