Regulation of Private Domestic Adoption Expenses - Mississippi

Date: May 2022

Birth Parent Expenses Allowed

Citation: Ann. Code §§ 43-15-23(4); 43-15-117(4)

The payment of the following expenses is permitted:

  • Legal fees that have been approved by the court
  • Attorney fees for services performed related to adoption proceedings
  • Reasonable and actual medical fees or hospital charges for services rendered in connection with the birth or medical treatment of the child
  • The mother's living expenses
  • Counseling for the parents and/or the child

Birth Parent Expenses Not Allowed

This issue is not addressed in the statutes reviewed.

Allowable Payments for Arranging Adoption

Citation: Ann. Code §§ 43-15-23(2); 43-15-117(3)

No person, agency, association, corporation, institution, society, or other organization except a child-placing agency licensed by the Department of Public Welfare shall request, receive, or accept any compensation or thing of value, directly or indirectly, for placing a child for adoption.

An attorney, physician, or other person may assist a parent in identifying or locating a person interested in adopting the parent's child or in identifying or locating a child to be adopted. However, no payment, charge, fee, reimbursement of expense, or exchange of value of any kind, or promise or agreement to make the same, may be made for that assistance.

Allowable Payments for Relinquishing Child

This issue is not addressed in the statutes reviewed.

Allowable Fees Charged by Department/Agency

Citation: Ann. Code §§ 93-17-12; 93-17-19

In all adoptions, the court shall impose a fee for any court-ordered home study performed by the Department of Human Services or any other entity. The minimum fee imposed shall not be less than $350 for each household on which a home study is performed. The fee shall be paid directly to the Mississippi Department of Human Services prior to the home study being conducted by the department or to the entity if the study is performed by another entity. The judge may order the fee be paid by one or both parents or a guardian. If the court determines that the parents or the guardian are unable to pay the fee, the judge shall waive the fee and the cost of the home study shall be defrayed to the Department of Human Services.

All costs of the proceeding shall be taxed in the manner that the court may direct, including a reasonable fee as determined, approved, and allowed by the court to be paid for each investigation that may be authorized or required by the chancellor, other than for an investigation and report by a public authority or agency, in which event no such fee shall be allowed.

Accounting of Expenses Required by Court

This issue is not addressed in the statutes reviewed.