In Oregon, Non-Departmental adoptions are defined as adoptions that finalize in Oregon for a child who is not in the custody of the Department. These adoptions are categorized as:
- Independent adoption
- Private agency adoption
- Out-of-state public agency adoption
When a petition to adopt is filed in an Oregon court, the petitioner is required under Oregon statute to serve a copy of the petition and other pertinent documentation upon the Director of DHS within 30 days. These documents can be mailed to:
Department of Human Services
Attn: Independent Adoptions
500 Summer Street NE, Ste. E-71
Salem OR 97301
DHS must submit the appropriate waivers to the court prior to finalization. Once service is complete upon DHS and the petition and accompanying documents are reviewed, a waiver of the 90-day waiting period, adoption home study and/or placement report requirement may be issued. .
Adult adoptions do not fall under the jurisdiction of DHS. Individuals who want to file an adult adoption petition are encouraged to get an adoption attorney to assist them in processing their adoption. The petition is filed with the court of jurisdiction. DHS is not served a copy of the petition and DHS does not issue a 90-day waiting period waiver/waiver of the home study.
Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children (ICPC)
If a child has to be moved interstate for the purpose of adoption, Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children (ICPC) rules may apply. Approvals must be given by both sending and receiving states before a child can be moved from one state to another. Exception to this rule are first degree relatives. If ICPC violation is established, DHS informs the court in writing, which may impact the adoption process. For more information call ICPC at (503) 945-5671.
Indian Child Welfare act
If the child has Indian (Native American) heritage, compliance with the Indian Child Welfare Act
is required. This may mean contacting the particular federally recognized Native American tribe(s) and submitting relevant documentation before the adoption can be granted.
Voluntary adoption registry
Print the Voluntary Adoption Registry home page to comply with the notification requirement per ORS 109.353. View sample format (PDF) to complete proof of verification.
Or, see sample below:
A SAMPLE FORMAT TO USE FOR COMPLIANCE WITH ORS 109.353 (Please do not file this sample with the court; re-type it accordingly.)
In The Matter of the Adoption of:
(Full Name of Child)
Court Case Number:
This statement is to verify, pursuant to ORS 109.353, the following persons have been advised of the adoption registry established under ORS 109.450 and have been given information on how to access those services.
Name of petitioner(s):
Name of birth parent(s):
(When birth parents cannot be located, the petition or affidavit should state the court is requested to waive this requirement upon a finding of good cause.)
Signature and title of person submitting verification and date.
Home studies & court reports
A home study is required for any adoption in which DHS does not (or cannot) issue a waiver of the home study requirement. A placement report must be waived when a biological or adoptive parent retains parental rights. DHS may issue a waiver of the placement report requirement for other categories of adoption as outlined in OAR 413-140-0032(3). When a placement report is required for an independent adoption, DHS will assign the placement report to an Oregon contracted adoption agency authorized to perform this work. The prescribed format for a placement report can be viewed at this link: http://www.oregon.gov/DHS/children/publications/placementreport.pdf.
Out of State home studies
To validate an out-of-state home study for a private agency or independent adoption that will finalize in Oregon, the home study must be approved with a certificate of approval by an Oregon licensed adoption agency in accordance with Departmental rules and regulations.
Home study & post placement report fees
The fee for an adoption home study is determined and made payable to the licensed adoption agency chosen by the petitioner to complete the study. The post-placement report fee is $800 and made payable to Oregon DHS at the time of filing.
Fee Change Notice:
Effective February 1, 2014, in accordance with Oregon Administrative Rule 413-140-0047, DHS is raising the fee for an independent adoption placement report from $675 to $800.
Adoption Advertising and Intermediaries also known as Facilitators
The state of Oregon limits or regulates the use of adoption advertising or intermediaries, also known as adoption facilitators under the following statutes: ORS 109.311(3) & (4); ORS 418.300; ORS 418.215, and ORS 163.537. For instance, ORS 109.311(3) states that, "A person may not charge, accept or pay or offer to charge, accept or pay a fee for locating a minor child for adoption or for locating another person to adopt a minor child, except that Oregon licensed adoption agencies licensed under ORS 412.001 to 412.161 and 412.991 and ORS Chapter 418 may charge reasonable fees for services provided by them." For more information on this subject, view Advertising and Use of Intermediaries or facilitators in Adoptive Placement
For more information about independent adoption, please call 503-945-5670, or send e-mail to Tina.J.Spencer@state.or.us
Note: The information found on this website is not intended to give legal advice. Consult an attorney for legal advice or refer to pertinent Oregon administrative rules, regulations, and statutes.
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