10 Steps to Adoption

Step 1Pre-Service Training

  • 24 hours of training, divided into 12, two-hour sessions. Course Descriptions
  • We offer seven courses per year, at different times and locations around the county. Training Schedule
  • All spouses and live-in partners must attend training, but children are not allowed.
  • Training is valid for 12 months. 
  • Completing training does not certify for foster care or adoption, see below.

Step 2Application Submission

  • Applications are given during preservice, after 3 self directed trainings are completed.
  • You encouraged to complete and return the application while attending pre-servic­­­e.
  • When you submit your application and paperwork, one of our support staff will conduct a short interview, notarize your application and take fingerprints for your background check.
  • All household members over the age of 18 must have proper ID and be fingerprinted.


Step 3The Home Study

  • Your home study will begin after you submit your application.
  • The study can take four to six months.
  • Adoption assessors will interview you several times, and visit your house on multiple occasions.
  • Your home must meet safety site regulations and pass a fire inspection.
  • You must submit several types of documentation, including health records, income verification, and more as required by the Ohio Administrative Code.

Step 4The Approval

  • Once the home study is completed successfully, your family is approved to adopt and may begin the search process.



Step 5

  • An adoption assessor and child protection specialist work together to determine the current and future needs of each child waiting for a home.
  • They will then select one or more families who would best meet the long-term needs of each child or sibling group.

Step 6

  • Once selected, your family will meet with the adoption assessor and the child’s case worker, who will share pictures and information about the child.
  • You can take this information home and talk to your family about adding a new family member.
  • If you wish to proceed, the adoption assessor and child protection specialist will arrange an introductory meeting between you and the child.

Step 7Pre-Placement Visits

  • If you decide to continue with the adoption process, the agency will arrange meet and greets between the child’s current foster family and potential adoptive family.
  • These meetings are held at both the potential adopter’s home and the child’s current home.
  • Your family will visit with the child in increasing time increments, starting at a one-hour visit, building up to a half day, then a full day, and eventually to weekend visits in the home of the new family.

Step 8

Moving Day!
  • The big day arrives and the child or children move in and become part of your family.
  • Social workers may visit weekly to check in, help with the move, and offer any support, assistance, or services that you or the child need.


Step 9Finalization

  • The family, child, and social service worker meet with a Judge or Magistrate to discuss details about the adoption.
  • Everyone gets to participate.
  • If everyone agrees, the judge will finalize the adoption.
  • You and your new child or children are officially and legally a family!

Step 10Post Finalization

  • The agency will continue to offer your new family support services, including training classes, support groups, and referrals to community agencies.

  • If you are a licensed Foster Caregiver or approved Adoptive Family requesting information about a specific child submit an inquiry and we’ll follow up with you.
  • If you are not a licensed Foster Caregiver or approved Adoptive Family please submit this interest form and we’ll get back to you.