International adoptions tend to run from about twelve or fifteen thousand to about thirty. But the cost usually includes agency fees, travel expenses and CIS (formerly called the INS) fees, as well as the fees required by the country from which you are adopting.
In most cases, the money is paid in increments as you go through the adoption process rather than all at one time in a lump sum.
Check with your accountant or the IRS, because adoptive parents may be eligible for a tax credit of over ten thousand dollars.
For Canadian readers, the average cost of an international adoption is about Can$20,000, including travel cost for two adults. But it's only a rough average, and varies up and down depending on the country and the number of trips needed, number of people travelling, services provided, dollar exchange rate, etc.
Two fees are a major part of your cost: the agency fee in Canada, and the foreign fee.
• Agency fee. You would generally pay half at the start and half on completing the adoption. The parts of the fee relating to time spent providing services would not be refundable.
• Foreign fee. Typically, you pay half when the match is made and half when the adoption is complete. This covers the foreign lawyer or agency's fee for translation, legal work, foster care, medical care and disbursements.
Then there are your expenses in Canada and abroad, such as air fare, hotel and meals.
A survey of the cost quoted in 2005 by Canadian adoption agencies showed that the range of costs for 25 countries is $10,000 to $35,000.
There are many websites where one can find information, help and attorneys concerning an international adoption. Besides the state's government sites there are websites like AdoptionAttorneys, InternationalAdoptionHelp or Adoption101. Another option is to contact adoption agencies that help with adoption cases. Some agencies include International Adoption Agency, InterCountry Adoption Centre and Wasatch International Adoptions.
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