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Chasing Elusive Dreams: My Adoption Journey
Many families have the heart for international adoption, but not all feel they possess the financial wherewithal to adopt internationally. The cost of an international adoption can be prohibitive to some families, but many families have found that using simple strategies can make adoption affordable.
Understand fully the financial commitment which you are undertaking. Review your fee sheet carefully, paying attention not only to the amounts listed but the timeframes listed. If you are planning on using adoption grants to cover a portion of your expenses, it is important to know that many granting organizations do not allow you to apply for a grant until after your home study process is complete.
Budgeting and Sacrifice
At the outset of your adoption journey, review your income and expenses. Identify any future windfalls which may be coming your way such as a bonus from work or a tax refund. Or perhaps you will identify an opportunity to earn additional income such as a part time job or selling craft items. Carefully review your expenses. Are there places to cut your expenses? Once you’ve reviewed your financial situation, identify the difference between your income and expenses. Start placing this amount in a separate savings account each month to use towards your adoption.
Adoption Tax Credit
The adoption tax credit has helped thousands of American families offset the high cost of adoption since the credit was established in 1997. The maximum adoption tax credit for 2016 will be $13,460. The precise amount of the tax credit depends on the expenses incurred and the amount of taxes owed by the adopting parents. It is important to consult your tax consultant as the adoption tax credit is not refundable and will not benefit all families.
Employer Adoption Assistance
More and more employers provide adoption benefits for employees choosing to grow their families through adoption. The Dave Thomas Foundation celebrates employers who support their adoptive families with the 2016 list of Best Adoption-Friendly Places to Work. Check with the human resources department at your employer to see what benefits they might offer.
Military families are eligible for reimbursement of adoption expenses. In order to qualify for the reimbursement, service members must be serving on continuous active duty for at least 180 days and the adoption must be finalized while on active duty. You can read more here. Check with your agency to see if they will waive the application fee for military families.
There are endless ways to fundraise to cover the cost of adoptions. Families can hold auctions or garage sales. Families also look to online options such as Adopt Together or Pure Charity. Families should review their skills and determine what type of fundraiser works best.
Families have successfully navigated the cost of adoption using these strategies. It was challenging but so worth the hard work and effort when they were able to open their home to a child in need!
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