How to Have a Private Missouri Adoption

How to Have a Private Missouri Adoption

Whether you are an expectant mother, have already given birth, or are a potential adoptive couple, understanding Missouri’s adoption process is important. 

Private adoption is also known as a domestic or independent adoption. It involves a birth mother voluntarily placing her baby or young child with a qualified adoptive couple through an adoption agency.

Choosing the Right Adoption Agency

Finding a reputable adoption agency you are comfortable with is the place to begin. Look for an agency that offers personal, professional guidance. Every adoption situation is unique, and you need an agency that will take the time to learn your story and counsel you wisely.

Fully Licensed

A licensed (certified) agency can perform adoption services within the state and across the nation. These agencies must comply with local, state, and federal laws. You are choosing the safest, most-qualified adoption specialist to handle your case.


The agency you choose should offer choices. What type of adoption plan is right for you? Can you look at several potential adoptive parent biographies? Can the agency help you complete a home study and put together your bio? The more services the agency has, the more confident you will feel.

A Helpful Staff

Counseling should also be available for the birth family and the potential adoptive couple. Adoption is an emotional experience for everyone, and you need an agency familiar with materials, private groups, and personal counselors to assist you.

Choosing the Right Adoption Plan

How much contact the two parties wish to have after the finalization of the adoption determines the best adoption plan. Both parties must accept an open, semi-open, or closed plan to have a perfect match. Generally, potential adoptive couples will agree to whatever contact the birth mother wants. 

With an open or semi-open adoption plan, everyone agrees to continue communication. In an open plan, a birth mother places her trust in the adoptive family she chooses to honor their written post-adoption contact agreement. The post-adoption agreement is filed with the courts at or before the finalization of the adoption.

A closed adoption plan requires everyone to acknowledge they want to remain anonymous and that there will be no contact during the process or after. 

Missouri Family Court

Once the parties agree to a plan and are matched, the next step in the process involves the courts. In Missouri, a birth mother must wait a minimum of 48 hours after giving birth before she signs the termination of parental rights. 

Once parental rights are terminated, the adoption process moves to the Missouri family courts. The courts determine child custody, establish paternity, and grant adoptions. No matter what action takes place, the law instructs the courts to always act in the child’s best interest. 

The birth mother, her child, and the potential adoptive couple must be represented individually in court. The adoptive couple covers all legal fees for the birth mother and child. Once the child lives with the adoptive family for six months, they file a Petition to Adopt, and the adoption is finalized. 

Are You Interested in Pursuing a Private Adoption?

Contact A Gift of Hope Adoptions if you want more information about private adoptions in Missouri. We are a full-service, fully licensed agency that can assist both expectant and birth mothers and potential adoptive couples.

Fill out our confidential online contact form, and we’ll be in touch as soon as possible.

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Elizabeth and A Gift of Hope have been a touchstone during our adoption process. Having had issues with a previous agency – Elizabeth was a breath of fresh air! Reassuring, supportive and empathetic. We are so in love with our daughter and thank A Gift of Hope everyday for her!

AGOHA is a great agency that has provided amazing support and guidance though the adoption process. Would highly recommend AGOHA!

Our family has used their services for adoption. It’s wonderful dealing with someone who is looking out for the whole child, not just placing kids.

A Gift of Hope Adoptions is a Godsend for so many expectant young mothers. I completely recommend this organization for anyone interested in providing a wonderful life for their soon-to-be baby. This organization is also a Godsend for those of us who cannot have our own biological children.

I have recommended A Gift of Hope Adoptions to several mother’s considering adoptions for their babies. They have been so happy to feel supported and empowered through their decision.
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“We adopted both of our sons through A Gift of Hope Adoptions. They helped us every step of the way and answered all the questions we had, and we had a lot! We would not be where we are today, with two busy boys in our family, if it wasn’t for A Gift of Hope.”

“We decided to use A Gift of Hope Adoptions because they are very personal and caring. The wait and uncertainty of adoption seemed daunting, but A Gift of Hope helped make the process go smoothly, and we couldn’t be happier with our beautiful child.”