Fees and waiting times for infants vary tremendously, depending on the type of adoption involved. Public agency adoptions are often less expensive than private agency or independent adoptions, although private adoptions may take less time. Costs of adopting a healthy infant in the United States through a private agency range from $15,000 to $30,000. Foreign adoptions can be expensive as well; families pay between $10,000 and $20,000 in fees, and that may not include travel and living expenses while in the foreign country.

It is not expensive to adopt a child with special needs; often the agency has a sliding fee scale, and there may be little or no cost. After the adoption, the child may receive subsidies to cover medical and other expenses, although the family is still likely to incur costs for ongoing care.

Couples should obtain a written disclosure of all adoption fees and costs before going ahead with the adoption.

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