Use of Advertising and Facilitators in Adoptive Placements - Indiana

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Use of Advertisement

Citation: Ann. Code § 35-46-1-21

The term 'advertisement' means any communication by any medium within the borders of Indiana, including print advertisements, digital advertisements, radio, television, and outdoor advertising signs.

Only a person that is an attorney licensed to practice law in Indiana or a licensed child-placing agency may place an advertisement for either of the following purposes:

  • A child is offered or wanted for adoption.
  • The person is able to place, locate, or receive a child for adoption.

A person who knowingly or intentionally violates this section commits unauthorized adoption advertising, a level 6 felony.

This section may not be enforced against any of the following:

  • A Federal agency
  • The Indiana Department of Child Services
  • An Indiana resident seeking to adopt a child on his or her own behalf

Use of Intermediaries/Facilitators

Citation: Ann. Code § 35-46-1-22

A person who knowingly or intentionally provides, engages in, or facilitates adoption services to a birth parent or prospective adoptive parent who resides in Indiana commits unauthorized adoption facilitation, a misdemeanor.

'Adoption services' means at least one of the following services that is provided for compensation, either directly or indirectly:

  • Arranging for the placement of a child
  • Identifying a child for adoption
  • Matching adoptive parents with birth parents
  • Arranging or facilitating an adoption
  • Taking or acknowledging consents or surrenders for termination of parental rights for adoption purposes
  • Performing background studies on the adoptive child or adoptive parents
  • Making determinations about the best interests of a child and the appropriateness in placing the child for adoption
  • Postplacement monitoring of a child before the adoption is finalized

The term 'adoption services' does not include the following:

  • Legal services provided by an Indiana-licensed attorney
  • Adoption-related services provided by a government entity or by a person appointed to perform an investigation by the court
  • General education and training on adoption issues
  • Postadoption services, including supportive services to families to promote the well-being of members of adoptive families or birth families

This section does not apply to the following:

  • The Department of Child Services, an agency or person authorized to act on behalf of the department, or a similar agency in another State
  • The Division of Family Resources, an agency or person authorized to act on behalf of the division, or a similar agency in another State
  • A child-placing agency licensed under the laws of Indiana or another State
  • An attorney licensed to practice law in Indiana or another State
  • A birth parent or prospective adoptive parent acting on his or her own behalf