Monday, June 10, 2019

Myths about Adoption

What’s holding you back from adopting a child? Could it be the rumors and myths about adoption that float around?  We are here to ease your mind and put few common myths to put to rest.  

Image result for adoption images

I can’t afford adoption: When looking into adoption it can become incredibly overwhelming and a lot of people get turned off by thinking they can’t afford what it costs to adopt a child.  There are so many different options when looking into adoption financially.  What you need to do is make sure you take the time to do your research and prepare for the costs to come.  There are different grants and low interest loans you can look into applying for.  Like any major financial decision, you have to sit down and prepare for it. Here are a list of Adoption Aid Grants
Adoption takes too long: Like all great things in life, adoption does not happen overnight.  You have to be patient and take it one step at a time.  The process can go a little faster if you are equipped to adopt a child with special needs, an older child or sibling groups.  International adoptions will take a little more time, and often, it is in fact easier to adopt from the U.S. Foster Care.  It takes about a year to adopt from the foster care system and it can take from two to five years to adopt internationally.  

Image result for adoptionRelatives may find the child and take them back: This is not legally possible in most states due to laws which sever the rights of relatives after the adoption is finalized.  Once an adoption is final, there is no reversing it.  Before an adoption is final, there are a series of steps to insure that this will not happen.  Biological parents are looked for and contacted if they have taken the necessary steps to insure that they will receive notice of an adoption plan, such as registering with a Putative Father Registry.  If the biological father does properly register to receive notice of the adoption plan, then he must decide if he can care for the child or if the child should be adopted. 

In terms of other family members, usually, they are not entitled to notice of an adoption plan.  However, in some states, relatives who have legal custody are entitled to notice and to contest an adoption plan.  And when a child is placed through the foster care system, relatives are looked to as alternatives families when parents are not able to parent.  


Foster care kids are out of control and dangerous
: It is true that a lot of children in foster care have experienced neglect and/or abuse that cause them to have developmental and behavior issues but they are not juvenile delinquents. They have experienced situations that have lead them not to feel safe. 
These kids need a safe and nurturing home so they can become wonderful young adults.

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Single parents can’t adopt
:
There is opportunity for all to adopt.  Just because you are single, does not mean there isn’t a way for you to adopt a child. What matters is that you are able to provide a loving, safe and supportive home for a child.  This goes with age as well.  You don't have to be young to adopt either; in fact older parents are typically the sought out demographic for adoptio
n.  It is recommended to contact a reputable agency for more information on age requirements depending on where is it you are looking to adopt from.  For different countries requirements will change. 


These are only a few of the many myths when it comes to adoption. But we hope we have eased your mind about some of the biggest myths floating around.  Remember to always do your research and make sure you are getting your information from reliable sources. the Law Offices of Karen S. Law PLC does adoption overview planning sessions which will tailor the best approach for your family.  The fee is nominal and this can save you a lot of time.  We also help you determine which adoption agencies will be the best fit for your family.  

To schedule your adoption overview meeting, please contact us today:  Schedule@lawadoption.com or call 703 723 4385.


Drafted by Brittany Alness, staff member of the Law Offices of Karen S. Law, PLC.
Disclaimer

Image result for adoptionThis web site and the information contained within have been prepared by Law Offices of Karen S. Law, PLC for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. This information is not intended to create, nor does receipt of it constitute an attorney-client relationship. Viewers should not act upon information found here without seeking legal counsel. All photographs shown on this blog are depictions of clients and are not actual clients of this law firm. Copyright Karen S. Law, 2019.

Tax Time: No Social Security Number for your Adopted Child?

With tax season just past us, I received many phone calls from families who had adopted in 2018 but their finalization was not able to be processed before the end of the year. That means that the child was not issued a Social Security Number in time for their tax return. This is hugely significant in terms of claiming the child as a dependent and also obtaining the Adoption Tax Credit.

Image result for 1040 form imageI also see this when the adoption has been finalized but the child has not yet received the new birth certificate.  Usually, to obtain a social security number, you have to have the new birth certificate and that can take several months and up to a year after the adoption is finalized.

So, for next year, if you adopt, go ahead and obtain an Adoption Tax Identification Number ("ATIN") as soon as the child is placed with you.  Contact the IRS at https://www.irs.gov/. The form you need to fill out is the W-7A: https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/fw7a.pdf.  You will need to complete the form, sign it, and mail it with backup documentation:

In general, one of the following documents will satisfy this requirement. A copy of the placement agreement entered into between you and an authorized placement agency. A copy of the document signed by a hospital official authorizing the release of a newborn child from the hospital to you for legal adoption. A copy of the court order or other court document ordering or approving the placement of a child with you for legal adoption. An affidavit signed by the adoption attorney or government official who placed the child with you for legal adoption pursuant to state law. Foreign adoptions. In addition, if you adopt a foreign child with U.S. citizenship or resident alien status, include with your Form W-7A a copy of your child’s: Permanent resident card (green card), Certificate of Citizenship, or Passport with “I-551” stamp

Currently you would file this form with documentation by mailing to:

Department of the Treasury Internal Revenue Service Stop 6182 Austin, TX 73301-0066
However, you should double check the mailing address on the W-7A instructions before you mail it:  https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/iw7a.pdf

It can take up to 8 weeks to receive the ATIN so fill the form out ASAP!

The ATIN can be used in lieu of a social security number for up to two years. Once you receive your child's new birth certificate, you can go to the Social Security office nearest you and obtain a Social Security number for your child.  Then, you will swap out the Social Security number for the ATIN the following year.

What if the child you adopted is not a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident?  You cannot use this form.  Instead, you will use the Form W-7 and obtain an Individual Tax Identification Number ("ITIN").  The instructions for the ITIN are found here:  https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/iw7.pdf.

One key timing difference is that for the ITIN, you cannot file it in advance.  You file it WITH your tax return and you have to use a paper filing for your tax return, not electronic filing.  Read the instructions carefully because, many ITIN applications are rejected for failure to provide the proper documentation.

Disclaimer

This web site and the information contained within have been prepared by Law Offices of Karen S. Law, PLC for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. This information is not intended to create, nor does receipt of it constitute an attorney-client relationship. Viewers should not act upon information found here without seeking legal counsel. All photographs shown on this web-site are depictions of possible clients and are not actual clients of this law firm. Copyright Karen S. Law, 2019.




Monday, March 25, 2019

How do I claim my adopted child with out a social security number?

How do I claim my adopted child with out a social security number?

1) If you child is a U.S. Citizen go to IRS.gov and fill out the W-7A form before filing your taxes (do that now since it can take up to a month to process)

2) If your child is not a U.S. Citizen then while you are filing fill out the W-7 and then in the SS# space fill in applied for.

https://www.americanimmigrationcouncil.org/sites/default/files/research/the_facts_about_the_individual_tax_identification_number.pdf














Disclaimer

This web site and the information contained within have been prepared by Law Offices of Karen S. Law, PLC for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. This information is not intended to create, nor does receipt of it constitute an attorney-client relationship. Viewers should not act upon information found here without seeking legal counsel. All photographs shown on this web-site are depictions of possible clients and are not actual clients of this law firm. Copyright Karen S. Law, 2019.