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What is an adoption home study? What type of information is included in it?

Child Welfare


An adoption home study (or family profile) is a written report by a social worker who has met with the applicants on several occasions, both individually and together (if a couple). Completing the home study or family profile involves education, preparation, mutual assessment, and gathering information about the prospective adoptive parents. The assessment process is designed to help families decide if adoption is right for them, as well as to help families understand the type of child whose needs they could meet. This process can take from 2 to 10 months, depending on agency waiting lists and training requirements. 

Child Welfare Information Gateway, a service of the Children’s Bureau, Administration for Children and Families, provides additional information in the factsheet The Adoption Home Study Process.

In addition, Information Gateway’s web section Home Study/Family Assessment includes resources about the home study process for different types of adoptions.