Post-placement visits are sometimes referred to as post-
placement supervision. The two main purposes are to gather information and to
provide support. Once a child has successfully been placed in your home, all states,
private agencies and international countries will require one or more
post-placement visits. The timing of these visits may need to conform to state,
agency or country mandates. The social worker may only need to visit your home
once or several times. This generally will take place somewhere between 3 and 6
months or at a 12- month interval, depending on the legal requirements of the
county in which you reside and the country from which you adopted. A domestic
adoption can not be finalized until a licensed social worker prepares a
post-placement home study report. This report is then submitted to the court
for a judge to approve the adoption.
The first purpose of the post- placement visit
is to help make this a smooth transition. Adoption of a child can often involve
significant adjustments for family members and to your home. Prior to adopting,
your home may have been very orderly and now it has been transformed to
accommodate toys, baby equipment and general chaos. The social worker is there
to provide support, assistance and education to the adoptive parent(s). They
are there to answer any questions you may have about general baby care, sibling
adjustment reactions and to make referrals to other professionals if indicated.
This is an opportunity to explore concerns about attachment, parenting,
behavioral and/or health issues with your social worker.
The second purpose is to gather the necessary information
required in order to prepare a written report to the court and or country of
your child’s origin.
Many adoptive parents, to some extent are
nervous about post-placement visits. They may feel that the social worker is
‘spying’ on them. Just as with the pre-placement home study, the post-placement
report will cover a great deal of information. This report will address the
issue of how the child and parent(s) are bonding and adjusting as a new family.
The social worker will want to see you interact with your new child. They are
not looking for the ‘perfect parent’, but one who is loving and sincere.
Additionally, you will need a letter from your child’s pediatrician, stating
the current health and developmental status, any health concerns, and that your
child is up to date on all immunizations. A positive written statement from
your child’s teacher also will be needed if they are of school age.
The post -placement visit needs to result in a
favorable finding. In the case of domestic placements, the social worker
genuinely wants the adoption to be finalized. They will be eager to help in any
way to assure a successful placement. The social worker’s post-placement report
to the court must state that they think the Petition to Adopt is in the ‘best
interests of the child’ and; therefore, be granted. In almost all cases, the
court will follow the recommendation of the social worker that the adoption be
allowed to take place.
By Leslie Zindulka LCSW-R of Adoptiondoctors.com and Adoptioneducationclasses.com
Leslie on the web at Adoptionsocialworkny.com
The information and advice provided is intended to be
general information, NOT as advice on how to deal with a particular child's
situation and or problem. If your child has a specific problem you need to ask
your pediatrician about it - only after a careful history and physical exam can
a medical diagnosis and/or treatment plan be made. This Web site does not
constitute a physician-patient relationship.