Adoption Frequently Asked Question #3
What is an adoption home study? How do I get one?
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 of information about the prospective adoptive parents. The mutual 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.
As prospective adoptive parents, you must complete a home study before adopting, regardless of what kind of adoption you choose to pursue. A home study can be done by the adoption agency with which you choose to work, or by an independent licensed social worker if this is allowed under your State's laws or regulations (adoptions are governed by State laws and regulations in the United States).
To learn more, you may wish to read Child Welfare Information Gateway’s online factsheet, The Adoption Home Study Process, at http://www.childwelfare.gov/pubs/f_homstu.cfm. The web section, Home Study/Family Assessment (http://www.childwelfare.gov/adoption/preplacement/homestudy_assessmen...), includes resources about the home study process for different types of adoptions.
Child Welfare Information Gateway, a service of the Children’s Bureau, has comprehensive information regarding all aspects of adoption on its website at http://www.childwelfare.gov/adoption/index.cfm.