Regulation of Private Domestic Adoption Expenses - Arizona

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Birth Parent Expenses Allowed

Citation: Rev. Stat. § 8-114(A)-(B)

The court may approve any monies paid to a parent of a child placed for adoption or another person for the benefit of the parent or adopted child for reasonable and necessary expenses incurred in connection with the adoption. These expenses may include costs for medical and hospital care and examinations for the mother and child, counseling fees, legal fees, agency fees, living expenses, and any other costs the court finds reasonable and necessary.

A person who wishes to pay the living expenses of a birth parent that exceed $1,000 shall file a motion with the court to permit that payment. A maximum of $1,000 may be advanced for birth parent living expenses without a motion.

In determining what living expenses are reasonable and necessary, the court shall consider, but not be limited to, the following factors:

  • The current standard of living of the birth parent
  • The standard of living necessary to preserve the health and welfare of the birth parent and the unborn child
  • The existence of alternative financial resources for the birth parent

Birth Parent Expenses Not Allowed

Citation: Rev. Stat. § 8-114(G)

Expenses that the court finds to be unauthorized or unreasonable are not allowed.

Allowable Payments for Arranging Adoption

Citation: Rev. Stat. § 8-114(D)

An attorney may be paid for services in connection with an adoption but only in amounts that the court approves as reasonable and necessary.

Allowable Payments for Relinquishing Child

Citation: Rev. Stat. § 8-114(C)

Except as provided, a person shall not be directly or indirectly compensated for giving or obtaining consent to place a child for adoption.

Allowable Fees Charged by Department/Agency

Citation: Rev. Stat. § 8-133

The Department of Child Safety may charge fees for studying and certifying adoption applicants and for providing placement supervision services to cover the costs of providing these services.

If an investigation is conducted by an officer of the court, the court may charge a reasonable fee. The court may waive, reduce, or defer this fee if the fee would cause a hardship.

Accounting of Expenses Required by Court

Citation: Rev. Stat. § 8-114(E), (F), (H)

No fewer than 10 days before an adoption petition is heard, the prospective adoptive parent shall file with the court a verified accounting of all fees, payments, disbursements, or commitments of anything of value made or agreed to be made by the prospective adoptive parent in connection with the adoption. The accounting shall include all living expenses and be accompanied by an affidavit that is signed by the birth mother, either before or after the birth of the child, that verifies that they have been given written notice, they understand that the payment of these expenses does not obligate them to place their child for adoption, and they may give a valid consent to the adoption only after the child's birth without regard to any cost or expense paid by any person in connection with the adoption. This subsection does apply to an agency-placement adoption or to a direct-placement adoption made through an agency.

The court shall allow, disallow, or allow in part fees, payments, disbursements, and commitments as shown in the accounting. All adoption cases shall be reviewed by the juvenile court for reasonableness and necessity of expenses.