Timeline of Adoption at Birth

Whether you’re a prospective adoptive parent, birth mother, or expectant mother considering adoption, you might be curious to know more about how the adoption process unfolds at birth. Although every adoption story is unique, there are certain milestones that are the same for everyone. Here is a closer look at the adoption timeline at this stage of the adoption journey so you have an idea of what to expect.


Once the birth mother has given birth at the hospital of her choosing, there is a 48-hour window during which she can decide if she would like to proceed with the adoption. Although some birth mothers do not pursue adoption at all until after they’ve already given birth, many expectant mothers have already created an adoption plan and chosen an adoptive family for their child while they’re pregnant. 

Moving In

If the birth mother decides to go through with the adoption, she will sign the consent to adoption paperwork provided by her attorney after the birth. If you are a prospective adoptive parent, be prepared to wait up to two days to find out if the adoption placement will proceed as planned, no matter your level of involvement up to this point. Once the paperwork is signed, the adoptive parents will return home with their adopted child. 


Post-placement visits are an essential part of the adoption process during which a social worker will visit the adoptive family to see how things are going. These visits are designed to ensure that the parents are bonding with and supporting the child properly and that the child is adjusting well to their adoptive family. If all goes well on these visits, the adoption may proceed. 

Making The Adoption Official 

The final step in every adoption process is a hearing at which a judge will review the adoption to decide if the adoptive parents should be given legal custody of their adopted child.

Although every state has different requirements, and some laws vary depending on where you’re adopting a child from, the judge will award the adoptive parents legal custody if the requirements have been met. Once the adoption is legally finalized, the adoptive parents can apply for a new birth certificate for their child and celebrate the momentous occasion of officially becoming a new family.

Choosing Adoption 

As adoption lawyers in the state of Florida, we have years of experience with the adoption process. We are proud advocates for and sensitive to the needs of birth mothers and children, and we understand that choosing to put your baby in an adoption plan is a life-changing decision, full of emotional highs and lows. We are here to support and guide you each step of the way, whether or not you decide adoption is right for you. If you would like to schedule a consultation to find out more about adoption and the services we offer, contact us today.

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