Birth Mother Blog

What is ICPC and as a Birth Mother, Why do I Need to Understand it?

What is ICPC, and as a Birth Mother, Why do I Need to Understand it?

By Samantha Bradley

If you’re a pregnant mother considering adoption in Missouri, you’ve likely looked up adoption agencies in your state. But did you know that your baby can be adopted by a family in another state? Even if you work with a local adoption agency in Missouri, you may find that the perfect adoptive parents live in a different state. Luckily, Adoption Choices of Missouri can help you in every step of the interstate adoption process and can help you navigate ICPC requirements. Besides completing the adoption process in Missouri, Adoption Choices will help you meet adoption requirements in another state and send your baby to the perfect family.

Your Decision in Placing Your Baby for Adoption

Every birth mother’s story is different. Whether you have an unplanned pregnancy or realize you’re not financially ready for a child, an adoption agency can help. A private adoption agency gives you a voice during the entire process and allows you the freedom to choose the family your baby is placed with. With trained professional counselors at your service during every step of the adoption process, you won’t feel alone. An agency can assist you with both in-state and out-of-state adoption. 

Steps to Complete Adoption in Missouri

  1. Contact Adoption Choices of Missouri online or by phone.
  2. Schedule a meeting with one of our counselors.
  3. Fill out the paperwork given by your counselor. In this step, you’ll create an adoption plan.
  4. Match with a doctor.
  5. Go over adoptive parent profiles until you find the right family.
  6. Once you’ve matched with a family, your counselor can assist you with more options for unplanned pregnancy. This could be financial and/or medical help and housing. 

How to Navigate an Out-of-State Adoption

Say you’ve completed the above steps and matched with an adoptive family in another state. Because state adoption laws vary, adoption placement will have to meet both state requirements. This is where ICPC, or Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children, comes in. This federal law governs out-of-state adoptions and outlines a process for moving a baby across state lines. The law protects the safety of the adopted child by checking family placements before formal adoption occurs. It also holds the adoption agency responsible for the child until the adoptive parents receive your baby. ICPC can seem intimidating to a new birth mother — this is where adoption services can help. Your adoption agency counselor can go into detail about the law, how it will affect your adoption process, and how to prepare. Your counselor is the one to reach out to an ICPC specialist to ensure your adoption meets requirements and goes smoothly. 

Going Through with an Out-of-State Adoption

Once you’ve completed the first five steps and have gone over ICPC with your counselor, you can complete the rest of your adoption process. This includes meeting with your placement family, giving birth, and continuing the post-placement process. Since the family may not live close enough to meet with you in person, your counselor can help schedule a phone call or online video chat with your family. You can go over your post-placement communication options and decide on an open, closed, or semi-open adoption. Once your baby is born, your baby is discharged into your adoptive parents’ custody. From here, Adoption Choices of Missouri submits ICPC paperwork to Missouri. Once this paperwork is approved, paperwork is sent to the adoptive parents’ state for approval. When both states review and approve the paperwork, the state of Missouri will contact the agency. The agency will let the adoptive parents know that they can take their new baby home.

Working with Adoption Choices of Missouri

Realizing you need pregnancy help and would like you put your baby up for adoption can feel overwhelming at first. But giving your child up for adoption with a private adoption agency assures you that you have constant support throughout the entire process. Our agency can help you if you decide on the best parents for your child who lives outside your state. So even if the process feels like a lot at first, know that you are supported and cared for with an agency like Adoption Choices of Missouri