Bay Area Adoption Services

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glossary

Adopt Abroad
U.S. law requires that for an adoption to be classified an "Adopt Abroad," both parents must travel and see the child prior to or during the foreign adoption proceedings, and that the child enter the U.S. with a final decree from abroad. If both requirements are not met, U.S. law requires California finalization, even if the foreign country considers this adoption finalized abroad.

Adoption Agency
An organization which places children for adoption. Can be a county agency or private agency licenced by the state. Some agencies may place only children born in the United States, or others may also place children from other countries.

CIS (also known as USCIS)
The United States Immigration and Naturalization Services. As an adoptive parent, you need to file paperwork with CIS so that your child can receive a U.S. visa in order to enter the U.S.A.

Domestic Adoption
A family chooses to locate a child within the United States to adopt, either through a county program or through a private adoption agency or adoption attorney.

Facilitator
A person or organization not necessarily licenced by the state in which they reside who arranges domestic or international adoptions. Many lawyers are facilitators.

Foster Care
A child temporarily placed with a family because of problems in the birth family or while waiting for an adoption to be completed.

Homestudy
A homestudy is a series of four meetings between you (all potential parents) and a social worker to explore family and adoption issues. This provides more in-depth information about the international adoption process and helps prepare you for parenting a child from another country or with special needs. It is a way for the social worker to assess your readiness to adopt and a means for you to learn more about what will be required. It is also a process to help you clarify your own thinking. Therefore, the homestudy can be viewed as a mutual assessment of all aspects of the adoption process and preparation for adoptive parenthood. The social worker will write a report that becomes the central document of your dossier.

This report focuses on you and your family, and the reasons you want to adopt. The report is required by overseas programs so that the administrators can be assured that the child will be placed in a stable environment. The homestudy is also required by CIS prior to granting a visa to the child so they can enter the United States.

Intercountry Adoption
Intercountry adoption is a technical term referring to an adoption in which the adopting parents will not actually see their child prior to the final court proceedings in the foreign country. In other words, they will not see their child until they go abroad to escort the child home.

International Adoption
A family chooses to locate a child outside of the United States to adopt. The child may be found in an orphanage overseas or may be placed with the family through a private adoption attorney practicing overseas.

Liaison Agency
An agency licenced by the state in which it is located to place children for adoption. The children can be from the U.S. or from abroad. BAAS generally works with liaison agencies in countries where we do not have an active program.

Postplacement Visits
After you arrive home with your child, you will meet with the social worker who wrote your homestudy. This is a chance for you to ask questions about settling into your new family.

Transracial Adoption
The placement of a child of a nationality or ethnic origin other than that of their adoptive parents.

       
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Bay Area Adoption Services: Serving Northern California
Member in Good Standing: Joint Council on International Children's Services,
NACAC, and The California Association of Adoption Agencies
Hague AccreditedHague Accredited by the COA
JCICS
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