Independent Adoption Law and Legal Definition

In an independent adoption, the child is placed with the adopting parents by the birth mother, without an agency serving as intermediary. . In such adoptions, the birth mother usually selects the adopting parents herself. Independent adoptions are lawful in all but a handful of states, but in some states they are severely restricted.

For example, in Michigan a birth mother can place a child for adoption independently (without an agency) only if the adopting parent is a member of the birth mother"s family. If a birth mother in Michigan desires to place a child for adoption outside her family, she must go through an agency

In Colorado, independent adoptions are not allowed within the state, but if the placement occurs within another state where the placement is lawful, Colorado will, under many circumstances, approve the placement and allow the adoption to proceed.

Florida allows a child to be taken into the state for purposes of independent adoption but will not allow a child to be removed from the state for that purpose.

The following is an example of a state statute defining the term:

“Independent adoption means the adoption of a child in which neither the department nor an agency licensed by the department is a party to, or joins in, the adoption petition.”[Cal Fam Code § 8524]