New Ways to Follow The Adoption Law Firm Online

PS_20141218090203We love interacting with the vibrant online community of friends of adoption and orphan care. In addition to YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter, we are now also on Instagram and Pinterest.

Please feel free follow us and share these pages! We love finding new ways to connect with those who share a heart for adoption.

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Free Webinar Helpful for Adoptive and Foster Parents

Trauma Informed Parenting with Kathy Hummel

We would like to inform you of opportunities by adoption friendly organizations such as the upcoming free webinar with Kathy Hummel.  The webinar is on the topic of trauma informed parenting as it relates to foster and adoptive children parenting.

Below is a description provided by www.childrensaid.org

Trauma Informed Care has become a household name in the helping profession but it is much more than just a theoretical framework for working with traumatized populations. This understanding sheds light into the thoughts, feelings, and behaviors that oftentimes leaves parents feeling confused, frustrated, unappreciated, angry, and even helpless. This is especially prevalent in the foster and adoptive family population. 

This webinar discusses the neurodynamics of trauma as it applies to trauma informed care and various parenting strategies based on this understanding.

 Learning Objectives:

 1.  Review Trauma Informed Care from individual to macro level perspectives

 2.  Discuss the role trauma plays in neurodevelopment and overall daily functioning.

 3.  Discuss practical parenting strategies for foster and adoptive parents based on this understanding.

The webinar is scheduled for:

Tuesday, December 16

12:00 pm – 1:00 pm (CST)

(Optional Q&A: 1:00 – 1:15 pm)

Click Here to Register for the Free Webinar.

Family Adopts Not 1 or 2…. but 8 Brothers!!!

Adoptions can be a very emotional event for all the parties involved.  Some adoptions separate siblings who have been in foster care.  That was not the case for the brothers adopted by Melissa Groves and her husband.  In 2005, the Groves family adopted 2 brothers.  They then proceeded to adopted 6 more brothers from the same mom over the next 10 years.

What a story of compassion by the Groves family to adopt 8 boys!  The Groves journey to adoption started with a 10 week foster care training class which led them to be foster parents for two of the brothers.  Those two were soon adopted by the Groves.

As Melissa Groves states, “Now in a perfect world, I could probably have ended my story right there; a story book ending with a “and they lived happily ever after” as a closing comment, but as I’m sure you’re aware, ours is not a perfect world. We decided that although we were done adopting, the need was so great; we would continue offering foster care and emergency placements. More and more we found our lives being enriched and hearts being captured by each of the young charges that we were blessed to have come to our home.”

If you are considering adoption, be encouraged by the story of the Groves family.  Of course it is hectic at times in the home, but according to the story told by Melissa, I don’t think she would turn back for a second.  Read her summarizing statement.

“This year we are excited to share that we will once again be taking an active part in National Adoption Day as we finalize and celebrate little Zayn officially becoming our son. I can’t think of a better way to finish growing the Groves family. If there is anyone reading this and considering adoption, please know that all your efforts and all the heartache will be worth it the first time your little one calls you “Mommy/Daddy.” Don’t give up!”

http://abcnews.go.com/Health/couple-adopted-boys-family/story?id=27136813

http://ccainstituteblog.org/2014/11/20/eight-siblings-adopted-into-one-loving-family/

 

Caroline Peoples Joins The Adoption Law Firm as Community Relations Manager

MONTGOMERY, AL — The Adoption Law firm is happy to announce that Caroline Peoples has joined us as Community Relations Manager. Caroline recently moved to Prattville with her husband from Chapel Hill, North Carolina, where she graduated from the University of North Carolina with a degree in Public Relations.

Caroline has previously worked in public relations and social media, and is passionate about using the skills she acquired at UNC to share the beauty and importance of adoption with the River Region and beyond.

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About The Adoption Law Firm

The Adoption Law Firm practice is specifically focused on domestic and international adoptions. Adoption is one of the most complex, emotional, and highly scrutinized areas of law.  Whether you are an expectant parent or an adoptive parent, The Adoption Law Firm can help you navigate the complex and emotional landscape of adoption.

What does Alabama Law Say about Child Support for Unmarried Mothers

Things happen … life happens … things rarely happen as planned.

In the event of an unplanned pregnancy, in a non-marriage relationship, one of the first questions a mother may ask is, “How am I going to take care of my child?”

Thinking

Thankfully, our legal system has taken into account the need for the biological father in these circumstances to “step-up-to-the-plate” and bear some of the financial responsibility.

Here are some basic questions an unmarried mother may be asking about child support:

1)  What is the child support process from start to finish?

In your situation, you would start with a paternity action.  If the court determines that he is the father, then child support should be automatic.  The amount of child support depends on several factors; the most significant being his reported income.

2)  If the biological father pays child support, does that give him rights for custody/visitation?

I wouldn’t say that paying child support gives the biological father a “right” to custody/visitation, however it does open the door.  The Alabama law that governs all this is Alabama Code Section 26-17-636(g) (available here:  http://alisondb.legislature.state.al.us/acas/CodeOfAlabama/1975/coatoc.htm)

3)  Do we have to wait to start the child support process until after birth?

No.  It can be initiated prior to birth.  See Alabama Code Section 26-17-611.

4) If the father decides he wants to forfeit his parental rights then does he get out of paying child support completely?

No, it’s not that easy to get out of child support.  Case law has gone so far as to state that, even if you placed the child for adoption, he could still be on the hook for child support.

5) Should I put the father’s name on the birth certificate?

Yes, if you can.  However, the hospital is supposed to require an affidavit from the father acknowledging his paternity.  This is governed by Alabama Code Section 26-17-315.  However, from my experience, I’m not sure that all hospitals require the affidavit.  Having his name on the birth certificate, in my opinion, definitely makes your case stronger for the paternity action.

 

 

Adoption Story for Tough Guys

People love to hear a good story.  Kids love hearing stories from a very early age.  Hearing a good story is one thing that people of all ages enjoy.  Most people enjoy helping others and hearing stories about people helping other people.  Adoption stories are great because they are not just stories, but real life changing stories that are heart-warming.

The following video outlines a heart-warming story with a little different twist.  A tough guy, law enforcement detective in Pittsburgh who enjoys teaching kids how to box showed that even tough guys can have a heart for adoption.  The story speaks for itself and is very moving.  This boxing instructor developed a relationship with two foster kids who came to the boxing facility at which he was a volunteer.  After the children did not show up for boxing for a little while, he went and found that they were living in an abusive foster home.  He decided to take them in as his own foster children and later adopted both of the brothers.  Watch the video for yourself and be encouraged and inspired.

The full story is available at http://vivas.us/boxing-instructor-got-curious-when-two-of-his-students-stopped-showing-up-he-went-searching-for-them-finding-them-at-an-abusive-foster-home/

Upcoming Webinar about Psychotropic Medication in Foster Children

Controversial topics abound in today’s society.  Let’s face it.  Controversy is interesting.  One such controversial topic is the use of psychotropic medications.  Perhaps you may wonder what does the use of psychotropic medicine have to do with caring for the fatherless.  The answer is that an unusually high percentage of children in foster care are treated with psychotropic medicine.

One great way to learn more about the use of psychotropic medication in the lives of foster children is to watch the upcoming webinar with expert physician, Brent Wilson. Details are below from the website http://www.childrensaid.org/apac/services_/trainings/webinars.html

Upcoming Webinar:

Navigating Psychotropic Medications: A Child Psychiatrist’s Guide to Sailing through the Storms of Overmedicated Children

Brent Wilson, M.D. 

Thursday, October 16 12:00pm -1:00pm

Foster children are an extremely vulnerable group. They experience symptoms of mental illness at rates that far exceed other socioeconomically disadvantaged youth.  This is a direct result of the traumatic neglect or abuse that they experience while being cared for by their birth parents.  For many reasons, this results in foster children taking psychotropic medications at alarming high rates.  Despite the fact that foster children make up less than 5% of the entire population of Medicaid insurance youth, nearly one third of the Medicaid’s behavioral health expenditures are spent on foster children.

During this webinar you will hear from a child psychiatrist who has worked with Alabama’s Department of Human Resources for several years.  Dr. Brent Wilson has worked for state agencies and community providers across the nation to help insure that foster children receive appropriate mental health services.  During this webinar, Dr. Wilson will focus on the most frequently asked questions from case managers, advocates, judges, and other partners that are involved in over-seeing mental help services of children.

Thursday, October 16, 12:00pm-1:00pm (CST) (Optional Q&A: 1:00-1:15pm)

Click HERE to register for our next webinar, “Navigating Psychotropic Medications”

 

Together for Adoption Conference 2014

Together for Adoption Conference 2014

 

We at The Adoption Law Firm would like to continue to promote great events supporting the work of caring for the fatherless. One such event is coming up October 17th and 18th in Greenville, South Carolina.  This event is the Together for Adoption 2014 Nation Conference.  Below is a personal invitation from one of the founders of Together for Adoption.

With the recent Ebola crisis in Africa, this year’s conference them will be even more applicable. Read the conference theme below as stated by Together for Adoption:

“The devastating impact of Ebola on families is another reason why I believe this year’s Together for Adoption conference is especially timely. Our conference theme is Urgency & Complexity: Biblical & Ethical Approaches to the Orphan Crisis. When you think about the children who are being orphaned by Ebola, I’m sure you can feel something of the urgency and complexity of this crisis. So, as we unpack our theme next week, we will work hard not to lose sight of these children who are being lost in the headlines of our soundbite world.”

Two other sessions stated on the conference promotional material are:

  1. Life in Limbo

Limbo offers a glimpse of what foster care feels like through an interactive role play. The participants each decide to be a foster parent, a birth parent or a child about to enter foster care.  Tensions are high, brokenness is revealed, and healing occurs.

At our Conference, 20 people will role play the simulation during the lunch hour on Friday. The others will enjoy their lunch and view the experience. These 20 volunteers will also get their lunch…just not right away.  They will gain a valuable experience first.

  1. Advice for White Parents of Black Children

Dr. Toney Parks will share wise advice for White couples parenting African-American children in a post-Ferguson country.

If you are looking for a very special weekend to spur you on in caring for the fatherless, I hope you will consider the Together for Adoption 2014 National Conference.

Adoption Airfare: Helping Adopting Families with Airfare

Adoption Airfare:  A great company helping adopting families with international travel

The process of adopting a child can seem overwhelming to some.  This process becomes even more intimidating when considering international adoption.  Thankfully, many organizations exist to help those pursuing adoption.

It is our joy to highlight some of these organizations with a heart for the fatherless.  One such organization is Adoption Airfare.  Owners Kevin and Tabatha Lovell operate their business to help adopting families tackle one of the many challenges in adopting a child, namely international travel.

As you can imagine, when adopting internationally, it is very important to have flexible airline tickets because many times, exact dates of travel cannot be known.  Here are a few of the benefits of working with Adoption Airfare, according to a brochure outlining their services.

  • Special airfare discounts for adopting families
  • Ability to hold flights for up to 11 months in advance with certain airlines
  • Special fares for children returning on a one way ticket home
  • Communicating with adopting families internationally to help them with changes to their flights
  • Responding quickly to the needs of adopting families
  • Flexible tickets that can be changed easily for zero airline penalties with certain airlines
  • Cultural Heritage Travel for adopting families returning to their child’s home country
  • Public speaking at adoption seminars and churches
  • Holding the hands of our adopting families each step of the way through their adoption journey

As you may already know, many parts of the adoption process can only be handled by the adopting parents.  Isn’t it great to know that an organization like Adoption Airfare can take one major thing off of your to-do list?

To learn more about Adoption Airfare, contact them at:

Website:  www.adoptionairfare.com

Email:  tabitha@adoptionairfare.com

Phone: 800-277-7651  ext. 800