Adoption can be a very emotional trying time for any family going through the motions and protocols to legally adopt a child. Sometimes, through deception, families are promised a beautiful new baby, but in the end all they get is an empty wallet. That is exactly what happened to Beth and Rocky (last names withheld to protect their identity), according to a recent ABC news story.1
“I don’t think you can ever prepare yourself for ‘this person is completely bald-face lying to me,'” Beth said. “They have no intention of giving us this child.”
Actually, Beth and Rocky turned out to be only one of several couples that got scammed by a young pregnant mother. The offending mother ended up accepting money for medical expenses from several families. After the event was investigated and families were questioned, the expectant mother was arrested and charged for stealing from the families. Fortunately, Beth and Rocky eventually found a legitimate birth mother to adopt from.
How to Avoid an Adoption Scam
It was a heart-breaking ordeal for Beth and Rocky to go through a scam situation for their first adoption attempt. Beth even claims that adoption agencies, for the most part, refused to help with any follow up to the scam adoption story for ABC news. But, there are several agencies out there, that do provide some good information about how to avoid getting scammed in an adoption process. Here are five helpful tips from American’s Adoption Agency:
- Vet the Agencies to Find a Professional Provider – It is highly advised to use an agency, because a birth mother shows her commitment to the process by become one of their clients, too. Does the agency perform thorough background searches on the birth parent(s)? Does the agency do a good job of determining that the birth mother is committed to giving up the baby for adoptions? Does the agency allow mediated communications between the adopting family and the birth mother?
- Meet the Prospective Birth Parent(s) – By meeting a prospective birth mother, you both have the opportunity to meet, learn about each other, and determine if the adoptive parents are a good fit for the new baby.
- Keep A Journal – Be sure to use this when meeting with the birth parents. That way you have solid points documented, which if the birth parents change their tune on then you can raise it as a concern or mark it as a red flag. That’s a good time to bring up the issue with the adoption agency or to help you determine if you are being scammed.
- Use Agency for Money Transfers – Make sure you are making payments to the adoption agency for medical expenses and other living expenses for the birth mother. If you are working with an adoption agency, and the birth mother asks you to pay her directly, that should be considered a red flag about a possible scam.
- Research Current Scams – Scams will change as people become aware of the inner workings of them. So, it helps to be educated about what adoptions scams are taking place at the time of your adoption process.
Contact a Fort Wayne Adoption Attorney at Finderson Law, LLC
If you have more questions about an adoption, check out our Indiana Adoption FAQ page. In addition to working with an adoption agency, you may want to also hire a knowledgeable and trustworthy Fort Wayne Adoption Attorney with Finderson Law, LLC. We’ll help you navigate the complicated legal process of adoption in front of you. We will also strive to make sure the adoption process goes smoothly and without any let downs or scams. To speak with our adoption attorney, call (260) 420-8600 or email us using the contact form on this page.
1“After Adoption Scam Heartbreak, Pa. Couple Finds Miracle” published in ABC 27 News, May 2018.