December 2, 2023

Not everyone has the heart to raise a child that is not their own, so if you are considering adopting, know you are among the few with some of the most beautiful hearts. To the child, adoption offers them a golden chance to grow up in a loving environment like the majority of children. It also gives couples that can, for whatever reason, not have their children the opportunity to become parents.

The question in the mind of most people looking to adopt is the cost involved. Unfortunately, there is no way of knowing how much the process will cost you because each case is different, and the cost can range from less than $ 1,000 to $50,000.

Some factors influencing the cost of adoption are the type of adoption you choose, the fees charged by your adoption agency and lawyer, and travel expenses to meet with birth parents if they are in another state, among others. Below is a breakdown of types of adoption and how much you can expect to pay for each

Public Agency Adoption

Each state has an adoption agency that oversees adoptions from foster care. If you adopt from your state’s child welfare system, you must start as a foster parent. To be a foster parent means to take in children under the state’s care but to adopt them eventually.

The adoption process through this route is usually free or low-cost, and you may also receive a monthly stipend to help raise the child. According to the Adoptive Families magazine survey, most adoptive parents who choose this route spend less than $1,000.

Children adopted from foster care are often older and may have gone through some traumas, so it is important to consider that when choosing this option.

Private Agency Adoption

If you do not want to adopt from a foster home, the second option is to work with a private adoption agency or an attorney. Typically, the adoption process involves a home study, background checks, visitations, and post-placement supervision, irrespective of whether you use a private agency or pursue an independent adoption with the help of an attorney.

If you work with a private agency, your expenses will range from $30,000 to $60,000. Independent adoption is slightly cheaper, with the costs ranging from $25,000 to $45,000. Private adoption often involves newborns. In some cases, you may also have to cater for the mother’s medical expenses during delivery on top of other costs.

Inter-Country Adoption

“An inter-country adoption process can be long and complicated and largely dependent on the laws of the country where you seek to adopt. This means that the processes, time, and costs involved can vary widely,” says Attorney Matt Towson of Towson Law Firm.

Like in the United States, you may still need to work with public adoption agencies for children in a child welfare system or a private agency when adopting a child directly from their parents.

You will also need to make travel arrangements for the child you adopt, such as applying for their passports and travel visas, which can further complicate the process and increase costs. On average, you should spend between $20,000 to $50,000 on inter-country adoption and take one to five years to complete the process.


Adopting a child can be expensive, with many factors to consider. Foster home adoptions are more affordable than the private route; however, those wishing to go down this path will have to cover fees for services such as home study assessments, legal advice, travel, and birth mother expenses.