International adoption can be a financial strain for those planning to start a family. There are some resources and options available to help you decide whether international adoption is a good fit for your family.
Agency Fee Structure
Fees and costs are usually staggered over the course of the adoption process, enabling you to plan ahead for costs, but making it unnecessary to have all of the fees in savings. The fees are usually broken down and collected in increments, with the majority of the costs due at the time of or after child assignment. In order to assist families with budgeting issues, many agencies can accept payment via Visa or MasterCard credit card for the service fees or costs which are charged directly by the agency.
Federal Tax Credit
The Internal Revenue adoption tax credit may provide an important savings for your family.
The Hope for Children Act, enacted in 2002, raised the federal adoption tax credit to $10,000 per household. This tax credit applies to the year that the adoption is finalized and is for households earning a certain level of annual income. We encourage you to visit the IRS website for complete and up-to-date details or contact your accountant.
Adoption Friendly Employers
A growing number of employers offer adoption benefits to their employees. Check with your Human Resources Department to see what may be available to you. Some private and government employers give financial assistance or adoption reimbursement for their employees or extended leave for parents when traveling to pick up their child.
The assistance may include reimbursement for specific costs or affixed amount of money, regardless of actual expenses (usually between $2,000 AND $6,000). Other benefits may include paid and unpaid leave and counseling and support before and after adoption. If your employer does not offer a plan, talk to your employer. There are many benefits to the employer, as well as the employee, for offering adoption benefit plans. For more information about employer adoption benefits please contact the national Adoption Center in Philadelphia at 1-800-TO-ADOPT.
There are organizations that offer grants and loans to families wishing to adopt. These organizations are INDEPENDENT of HIC and we do not specifically endorse or recommend any included on this list. Please be advised that the information below may change at any time, without notice.
- Call the National Adoption Foundation about low interest loans to adoptive parents. Visit www.nafadopt.org for details.
- Check out A Child Waits Foundation for information about its low interest loans:, www.achildwaits.org.
- Borrowing from your 401-K plan may be a good way to afford a low interest loan.
- Take out a second mortgage if you own a home or get a signature loan at a bank and take advantage of the historically low interest rates.
Affording Adoption Foundation awards grants at various times throughout the year and based on financial need.
Both Hands awards grants to help reduce the financial barrier to adoption for families.
Founding Family Charitable Foundation awards grants to middle income parents, primarily public servants, who want to adopt but need financial help with the initial fees.
Gift of Adoption provides $1,000-7,500 grants to qualifying families adopting domestically or internationally, with the average grant totaling $3,500.
Global Orphan Foundation exists to support the adopting family by distributing approximately $75,000 per year.
Grant Me A Chance offers grants for families adopting older children, sibling groups, and children with special needs.
Help Us Adopt offers families demonstrating significant financial need grants of up to $15,000 towards domestic, international, foster or special needs adoptions.
His Kids Too! offers grants to qualifying families who are adopting internationally based on donations the charity receives on behalf of the family from other family members and friends.
International Adoption Resources offers $500-1,500 grants that can be used toward the cost of an international adoption. There are no income requirements, but financial need or financial hardship for either the adoptive family or child is considered.
The National Adoption Foundation offers $500-2,500 grants to adoptive families based on the availability of funds. There is no income requirement.
The Noah Z. M. Goetz Foundation provides $1,000 grants to qualifying families completing a domestic adoption.
The North American Council on Adoptable Children lists eligibility and benefit information for state adoption subsidy programs.
Oxford Adoption Foundation, Inc. offers low-interest loans of up to $5,000 to adoptive families.
Parenthood for Me offers grants to adoptive families pursuing domestic or international adoptions who can demonstrate significant financial need.
Pathways for Little Feet provides interest-free loans to qualifying families based primarily on (but not limited to) financial need.
Resources 4 Adoption provides the very latest in Adoption Financing Education, Information, and Resources.
The Rollstone Foundation’s mission is to assist in the adoption of orphans with special needs worldwide.
The Sparrow Fund provides grants to cover the cost of medical reviews from qualifying US providers for families adopting internationally.
SowingRoots’ goal is to minimize the financial burden that adoptive families face through merit based grants.
Titus Task Grants offers matching grants to Northwest Arkansas families who are within three months of traveling for an international adoption or within three months of placement for a domestic adoption.
United Healthcare Children’s Foundation provides grants to cover prescribed medical services (not fully covered by insurance) for children in need.
The ABBA Fund provides married Christian couples interest-free loans to cover adoption expenses.
America’s Christian Credit Union offers low interest rate adoption loans awarded to Christian families.
Caroline’s Promise provides $3,000 grants to married Christian couples living in North or South Carolina who are adopting domestically or internationally.
Feng Li Li Foundation awards grants to Christian adoptive couples. No Website; must request an application by mail or phone: 180 Laurel Avenue, Forest, IL 60045 Phone: 847-482-0500
God’s Grace Adoption Ministry provides matching grants in the $2,500 range, or assistance with fundraising, for Christian families with annual household incomes of $60,000 or less.
Golden Dawn Adoption Assistance provides grants of up to $2,000 to Christian families adopting children with special needs and other hard-to-place children.
HANDinHAND Christian Adoption provides matching grants for Christian adoptive families based on donations received on behalf of the family from other family members and friends.
Hebrew Free Loan Association provides interest-free loans of up to $10,000 for adoption expenses to Jewish residents of Northern California.
Heart of the Bride was established in 1998 as a non-profit organization dedicated to helping provide for the needs of orphans around the world.
IBSEN Adoption Network is a Christian organization offering grants to Washington State families adopting waiting children, difficult to place and/or children with special needs.
Katelyn’s Fund Orphan Ministry offers married Christian couples a $3,000 grant toward international or domestic adoption costs.
The Kyle Reagan Foundation offers grants for married Christian couples from Indiana or Tennessee who are adopting internationally.
Lifesong for Orphans offers interest-free loans of up to $12,000 to Christian families based on financial need and available funds.
The Lydia Fund offers married Christian couples a grant toward international adoption costs.
The Micah Fund provides dollar-for-dollar matching grants to prospective Christian adoptive parents seeking to adopt minority children.
Sara for Life, Inc. grant size will be determined by several factors, the most important one being the financial need of the family.
Sea of Faces Foundation provides $1,000-3,000 grants to Christian families adopting from a developing country.
Shaohannah’s Hope (also known as “Show Hope”) provides grants to qualifying Christian families for international, domestic and foster child adoptions.
Topeka Community Foundation Building Families Fund offers grants to Christian families from Kansas, or those with ties to Kansas, for up to half of all verified international or domestic adoption costs.
Family and Friends
Don’t forget that getting help from family, friends, or your church may be an option. You can also hold a fundraiser to help with expenses.
For full-time military personnel, there is a one-time subsidy program available for adoption expenses. Please check with the appropriate base personnel to determine the current benefits.