Who May Adopt, Be Adopted, or Place a Child for Adoption - New Jersey

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Who May Adopt

Citation: Ann. Stat. §§ 9:3-39.1; 9:3-43

Any person may petition for adoption, except that a married person may do so only with the written consent of his or her spouse or jointly with his or her spouse. The petitioner must be at least age 18 and at least 10 years older than the child to be adopted.

Who May Be Adopted

Citation: Ann. Stat. § 9:3-39.1

Any child may be adopted.

Who May Place a Child for Adoption

Citation: Ann. Stat. §§ 9:3-39.1; 9:3-38

A person, firm, partnership, corporation, association, or agency shall place, offer to place, or materially assist in the placement of any child for adoption in New Jersey only if the following apply:

  • The person is the parent or guardian of the child.
  • The firm, partnership, corporation, association, or agency is an approved agency to act as agent, finder, or to otherwise materially assist in the placement of any child for adoption in this State.
  • The placement for adoption is with a brother, sister, aunt, uncle, grandparent, birth father, or stepparent of the child.
  • The placement is through an intermediary and the person with whom the child is to be placed has been approved for placement for adoption by an approved agency home study, conducted in accordance with the rules and regulations of the Division of Child Protection and Permanency.

The term 'intermediary' means any person, firm, partnership, corporation, association, or agency, which is not an approved agency, who acts for or between any parent and any prospective parent or acts on behalf of either in connection with the placement of the parent's child for adoption in the State or in any other State or country. An intermediary shall not receive money or other valuable consideration in connection with the placement of a child for adoption.