What’s the Difference?
One of the first questions that women considering placing their baby for adoption ask is: “what’s the difference between working with an adoption agency and an adoption attorney?” That’s a great question. Understanding the differences between working with an adoption agency and an adoption attorney will help you make the best decision about how to move forward with making a personalized adoption plan for your baby. Let’s break it down and look at the four main differences between the two different adoption service providers.
Adoption agencies usually require an expectant birth mother to follow a rather strict set of rules and routines. For example, some adoption agencies require that an agency employee escort the expectant mother to each of her prenatal appointments. Other adoption agencies require that the expectant mother live in a certain place during her pregnancy or follow a particular schedule that may clash with her ability to work or attend classes.
Adoption attorneys tend to provide an expectant birth mother with MUCH more autonomy, allowing the expectant mother to lead her own life and make the choices she feels are best for her and her baby. They also provide recommendations and resources and birth mother support and financial assistance, as permissible by Florida law.
Both adoption agencies and adoption attorneys are ethically bound to provide confidential services to each pregnant mother that walks through their door. However, adoption attorneys may provide more sound and consistent legal advice than adoption agencies. The reason being is that adoption agencies usually require an outside attorney. Adoption attorneys, however, already know and understand the legal intricacies surrounding adoption, whether choosing adoption for an unborn baby or placing a newborn baby for adoption. This means that they are more readily available to help with that aspect of the adoption process.
Most of the adoption agencies in Florida are quite large, and therefore need to employ less experienced caseworkers and staff. At a large adoption agency, it’s not uncommon for a caseworker to be working with multiple expectant birth mothers at the same time. They may also have restricted decision-making privileges, since they’re lower in the organization’s hierarchy. Birth mothers who have worked with large adoption agencies have also said that it took multiple days for their agency contact to get back with them regarding important services. This may include approval for financial assistance or simply receiving access to things like counseling and support.
Many birth mothers find that adoption attorneys are easy to work with and very responsive to their needs. Most adoption attorneys work directly with the expectant birth mother, so they are more able to respond to needs and concerns in real-time. Adoption attorneys also work with a much smaller roster of expectant birth mothers and provide a more warm, personalized experience, along with better legal expertise.
Adoption attorneys tend to cast the broadest net possible when trying to help an expectant birth mother find the perfect waiting adoptive family for their baby. They utilize nationwide networks and can accommodate a more extensive array of personal preferences regarding the adoptive family. In contrast, adoption agencies often limit an expectant birth mother’s options to the waiting adoptive families that are currently on their list. The reason for this is that hopeful adoptive families pay large upfront fees to the adoption agency, and therefore, the agency may feel pressured to reduce their overall waiting time. To make an informed decision for you and your baby, please call us anytime at (877) 777-5070.
I remember feeling helpless. I didn’t know how to get Medicaid; I didn’t know how to find the right family; I didn’t even know how the adoption process worked….I was intimidated by the situation and couldn’t accept the fact that this pregnancy was a blessing and not just a “situation”. So THANK YOU for not giving up on me and for having so much patience with me. Thank you for showing me the beauty of choosing adoption.
Elizabeth is a compassionate and thoughtful human being. My husband and I were excited, yet had some anxieties about adoption. We didn’t know what to expect. We met Elizabeth who walked us through and always made sure we knew we were an important part of the whole adoption process. She answered every question and stood with us until our adoption was final. In the world of confusion and anxiety, she brought calm. Thank you Elizabeth. Now our family is complete!
Stephanie is doing this for the right reason. It's like this is her ministry.
We highly recommend and love Elizabeth Berkowitz, our adoption attorney! She has been our adoption attorney for both our 2 boys and we had incredible experiences with her. She is highly professional, extremely genuine in her care, and works hard on both the behalf of the birth family as well as the adoptive parents. She treats us with high respect and becomes a part of oura adoption family by the end of the process. It is hard to find adoption attorneys/agencies with as high of caliber as her! You are not just a number, but a family to be taken care of through the process. She has made our adoption process that much easier for us in the midst of all the ups and downs of adoption.
Thank you for helping me and journey with all the legal necessities. Thank you for not only being my amazing lawyer, but also a friend. And most of all, thank you for helping us find the perfect family for our baby! I thank God for guiding us to you and for working everything out perfectly. We could NOT have done it without you! Thank you!
How can I ever thank you for my child? You have given us a gift that feels miraculous. You truly do God’s work in the faxes, focus, phone calls and fedexes you deal with. I hope there is a special place in heaven for people like you. You make the world -and my world in particular- a wonderful, hopeful place.
You’ve given us a gift that just keeps giving! Our baby is almost 1 year old now! He is the best thing to ever happen to us and is filling our lives with joy! Thank you!
Thank you with all my heart! I am so grateful for all your time and energy spent on our case. You have given me the most incredible gift. You are forever in my thoughts and prayers. Thank you!
The Law Offices of Berkowitz & White recognize the overwhelming emotions involved in adoption. We provide individual and affordable legal services to adoptive parents, adoption agencies, and birth parents.