An Introduction to Adopting in Arkansas
At the Kelley Law Firm, we understand adoption to be the human process it is, and that's why we maintain a people-oriented, rather than paperwork-oriented program. Our adoption approach benefits families in many ways:
- 75 percent of our adopting couples complete their adoptions in less than one year.
- Your adoption is completely final 6 days after birth.
- Because we work with a small number of adopting couples, the personal attention you can be sure you'll receive is second to none.
- With our proven results, you will have much needed peace of mind during this exciting time.
The Kelley Law Firm truly enjoys working with adoptive couples in the state of Arkansas - it's a very adoption-friendly place for many reasons, and we think you'll feel the same after reading more about the process in Arkansas, below.
In Arkansas, a birth mother may relinquish her parental rights before the birth of the child. Following birth, she has 5 days to unconditionally withdraw her adoption consent. When the court order is filed on day 6, the adoption is final, meaning the birth mother can no longer revoke her consent unless she can prove she was tricked by fraud or deceit. In many states, there is a longer waiting period and the final order of adoption is not entered for 30, 60 or 90 days. The adoption may be completed in Arkansas if either the birth mother or the adopting parents are residents. The birth father is required to register with the state of Arkansas prior to the filing of the petition for adoption. Otherwise, he has no rights and is therefore not entitled to notice or sign an adoption consent. If the birth mother is married, written consent from the husband is required. The 5-day waiting period begins the day following birth, or the day after the consent to adopt was signed, whichever occurs last. While the 5 days are calendar days, the 5th day cannot occur on a day the courthouse is closed (i.e., weekends or holidays). In such cases, the next business day would be considered the 5th day, and the adoption may occur on the following day. During the 5 days, the baby will stay with you, but may not be removed from the state of Arkansas. Nationally, approximately 4 percent of birth mothers change their minds during the waiting period, and the Kelley Law Firm has noted a similar rate in our program.
All adoptions are completed in Benton County, Arkansas, the firm's home county. Adoptions are scheduled at 8:30 a.m. at the old Benton County Courthouse, 215 E. Central, in Bentonville. Generally these proceedings are private and take approximately 20 minutes. Pictures may be taken with the judge afterwards. Once all paperwork is filed with the court clerk, you may return home.
Thank you for your interest in the adoption services offered by the Kelley Law Firm. We can help make your adoption dreams come true! If you wish to learn more about our adoption program, please click here to learn how.