The information below concerns placing a child for adoption with a blood relative of the birth mother or birth father. Placing a child
in foster care and placing a child for adoption with a non-relative
are discussed in the respectively linked areas of this website.
Each State defines "relative" differently, including relatives through blood, marriage, or adoption. Additionally, as relates to Native American Indian children, some states allow members of the child's tribe to be considered
extended family members for
placement purposes and all states must comply with the Indian
Child Welfare Act.
The first requirements for an adoption placement with a relative are that the relative be "fit and willing," able to ensure the child's safety, and able to meet the child's needs. In many states when
the birth mother or birth father place their child with a relative, the law provides for a streamlined adoption process.
If you are placing a child with a blood relative or are adopting a blood relative you may need a licensed adoption agency to complete a Home Study, but it is
best to first check with an adoption
attorney or family law attorney.
To see how your specific state of residence addresses the issue of placement and adoption with and by a relative, visit the website Laws for Child Adoption or
Welfare Information Gateway website article Placement of Children With Relatives.