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What is 'pre-placement assessment' in a North Carolina adoption?

Having a family is a goal to which many North Carolina residents aspire. While, traditionally speaking, fulfilling this dream involves having one's own biological children, more and more individuals are opting to adopt for one reason or another. Many times this decision is fueled by a desire to help kids who have lost their own families, and unfortunately, there are many children who fit this description throughout the state and the country. We previously discussed who is eligible to file for adoption, and today we will talk about one step in the process, the 'pre-placement assessment,' also sometimes called a 'home study.'

These assessments have two goals: one is to assure the state or private adoption agency that the prospective parents are a good fit for adopting a child, and the other is to educate the prospective parents on what the process entails, and the skills they may need to deal with an adopted child. The training provided may vary depending on whether the adoption is of an infant or an older child, or if the adoption is occurring internationally.

The importance of this assessment should be understood by prospective parents. More than being 'judged' on their ability to provide a home, the training provided during this phase of the process can be invaluable, especially when dealing with a child who has experienced loss or other tragedy in his or her young life. Children who have been in foster care for a significant period of time, for example, and are used to instability may have to be handled with techniques different from other children.

Prospective North Carolina parents should not be scared off by this process, but they do need to know the depth of the undertaking. Adopting a child who needs a family can be extremely rewarding, so those individuals with questions about the process may wish to consider contacting an experienced family attorney to discuss their options.

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