The Homestudy Process
A home study is a requirement for adoption in New Mexico. There are adoption laws and regulations that outline most of what is required for the home study. The remainder of the requirements come from our agency’s policies developed from years of experience. Each home study requires documentation such as criminal records checks, medical evaluations, home inspection, references, financial and employment verifications. Personal history as well as the stability of the marital relationship will also be assessed as part of the home study process.
A home study takes about 3-4 months to be completed, and will begin once an application is approved.
1. Documentation Intake Session-
You will receive a packet upon approval of your application which will include all the necessary forms, documents, and instructions needed to complete this phase of the home study. Upon completion of that paperwork, a documentation intake session will be scheduled with a caseworker. This is a working session where the documentation required for the home study is completed and returned to AAA. It is also an orientation to the adoption process and to what to expect as the process unfolds. The first payment of the home study fee is required at the time of the session.
2. Home Inspection and Family Visit -(home visit #1)
This appointment is scheduled only after all the paperwork is completed and turned back into AAA. The caseworker visits the home and checks for safety concerns. It is a time for getting acquainted with the prospective adoptive family. The second payment of the home study fee is required at the time of this visit.
3. Individual Interviews–
This is a separate interview with each member of the couple. These appointments typically take place at Adoption Assistance Agency’s office.
4. Couples visit (home visit #2) –
This is an extensive interview with the couple which generally takes place at the family home.
5. Review of Home Study Document and Signing-
This appointment takes place at AAA, where each member of the adoptive parent couple reviews and signs their home study. The final payment of your home study will be required when a final copy of your home study is drawn up and signed by our caseworkers.
If your home study results in approval for adoption, you will submit a photo album and enter the “waiting period”. During this time your album will be shown to prospective birthparents whose criteria for adoptive parents matches yours. This can be a very challenging time, as there is not a way to predict whether the wait will be a few weeks or many months. The average wait time upon the completion of the homestudy and approval for adoption is approximately 14 months. We can help you by offering help, support, advice and suggestions, and welcome your phone calls as you feel the need for encouragement along the way.
Deciding which agency to work with is an important decision. Please call for an information packet which would include an agency brochure, fee sheet, and an application by calling (505) 821-7779, or click the following link to request an Adoptive Parent Information Packet.*
*As a small, private, non-profit agency, our board of directors has narrowed our scope of practice to working with traditionally married couples. If we are unable to meet your need, we will be happy to provide you with a referral to other agencies in the area.