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Many agencies have similar requirements for potential adoptive couples. Adoptive parents must be between 18 and 40 years of age. Parents older than 40, may be asked to adopt a slightly older child. In most cases, couples that have been married for at least three years will have an easier time completing an adoption than single parents. However, if you do not fit within these age guidelines, shop around, or consider other types of adoptions. It may still be possible for you to adopt.
A physician must prove that a parent is healthy enough to adequately care for a child. Financial stability and steady employment are also deciding factors for potential adoptive parents. Some agencies may give preferences to infertile couples or couples with a specific religious affiliation.
Regardless of agency criteria, every parent must successfully complete a home study to be approved to adopt. The home study maintains state adoption laws as well as requiring medical records, a criminal background check, background information on each adopting parents, and a safety assessment of the home.