5 Things to Know About the Adoption Allowance

You have probably heard the common myth that the government pays foster or adoptive parents to care for children. While it is true that the government provides financial assistance to children within the foster care system, it doesn’t pay anyone to care for a child. Money makes any situation a bit more complicated, and understanding adoption allowance is essential as an adoptive family. Consider these 5 things to know about the adoption allowance on your journey to build your family:

Adoption Allowance Is Not for Every Child

Adoption allowance, also known as adoption assistance, helps those children with special needs in the foster care system. Many times, these children require extra support and services that can go far beyond the scope of standard care for a child. The adoption assistance program strives to help the financial burden when caring for a child with special needs.

Every State Has a Different Adoption Assistance Program

Just like every state has its own laws and regulations regarding child seat belts, they also have different rules for their Adoption Assistance program. If adopting from another state’s foster care system, you will most likely have to follow the rules from the state in which the child came from. This can get tricky when crossing state lines, but most adoptive families handle it well.

There Are Two Different Types of Programs

While every state has their own Adoption Assistance program (often known as non-IV-E), there is also a Federal program known as Title IV-E. A child could qualify to receive funds from both the state and federal programs based on their needs. However, the state policies are usually the ones to abide by, even if you do receive funds from both sources.

Special Needs Can Vary Greatly

When it comes to adopting from the foster care system, a child designated as “special needs” could vary in physical, mental, and social capabilities. For example, children who are older than 8 years of age are usually considered special needs. Often these children have experienced hardship and complications in their young lives that will need professional help and services throughout their lives. On the other hand, you can also adopt a child from the foster care system that requires 24/7 care and monitoring. There is a wide range of ability when it comes to who is designated as a special needs child.

Program Money Is for Children’s Needs Only

Many states offer adoption assistance to foster parents who care for a foster child. This money should only be used for the care and well being of a foster child. Pocketing the money for your own desires is a grave misuse of funds. Often, social workers will ask about what you used the money on last month and how it directly benefited the child. The financial assistance can cover a wide range of things like food, clothing, and fun activities.

Many hopeful adoptive parents have heard rumors about adoption assistance and how it plays a part in a child’s life. Learning more about the program, as well as its rules and policies, will help adoptive parents understand how to use the money in the future. Adoption allowances strive to help lessen the financial burden of raising a child with physical, developmental, social, or emotional needs. Consider these 5 things to know about the adoption allowance program.