State Ward Adoption2022-03-13T15:48:19-04:00

State Ward Adoption

In the United States at any given time, there are approximately 200,000 children in foster care due to abuse, neglect and/or abandonment. When children cannot return home, they become available for adoption. These children are placed in either foster homes or residential treatment centers. A permanent family must be willing to provide children with a nurturing, supportive and secure home environment. These children will offer a challenging, yet rewarding adoption experience to prospective adoptive parents.

Children of all races, ethnicities, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression (SOGIE) are currently in foster care and available for adoption. All of these children are considered to have “special needs.” Special needs are defined as a child who has any one or combination of the following:  emotional, psychological, educational, physical, or behavioral needs.  The degree of these needs varies from child to child, situation to situation. The majority of children waiting in the state ward adoption programs are over the age of six, and often part of a sibling group. For more information regarding waiting children in the state of Michigan, please visit the Michigan Adoption Resource Exchange website (

In the State of Michigan, on average there are 400 children monthly waiting for an adoptive home. Michigan requires a minimum of 20-25 hours of Pre-Service Training classes prior to the completion of an adoption home study. Please see more information regarding GROW Training ( Once you have begun working with Forever Families, you will be referred by your worker to attend GROW Training.

Forever Families is committed to working with families to provide them with information, resources and support to ensure that our families are adequately prepared for their adoption journey. We have supportive staff and community resources to help ensure the most successful adoption possible.

Steps to Becoming an Adoptive Family

  • Step 1: Contact Forever Families

    • Contact Forever Families to begin the Adoption Process.
  • Step 2: Attend Orientation at Forever Families

    • Register and complete an orientation at Forever Families.
  • Step 3: Submit an Adoption Application and Fingerprint Clearance Request

    • Applicants must submit an adoption application and fingerprint clearance request.
  • Step 4: Attend Pre-Service Training

    • Applicants must attend a pre-service training consisting of 20-25 hours of training before adoption approval.
  • Step 5: Complete an Home Assessment

    • Forever Families employee will plan a home visit to start the home assessment process.
  • Step 6: Child Search for Adoption

    • An assigned adoption worker will assist in matching you with your forever child. View the following websites profiling waiting children: and

Adoption Services

Adoption Pre-Placement & Home Study

Process of completing a comprehensive evaluation of prospective adoptive parents, which include in person interviews in the applicants home. Forever Families does provide an expedited service for adoption home studies (certain conditions must apply).

Adoption Post Placement Supervision Reports

Following an adoption placement, Forever Families can or will provide formal, detailed reports to Courts or governing institutions as required, following the licensing and state guidelines.

Adoption Post Placement Assistance and Referral

Forever Families adoptive parents can access services which include identification of local resources as well as 24 hour access and assistance to all adoptive families. The agency also will provide the family with a State listing of all post adoption services available in Michigan.

Adoption Educational Training & Workshops

Forever Families offers educational adoption workshops on all facets of the adoption process for families, individuals and professionals. Our orientation seminars are a comprehensive one-on-one training educating families on the adoption process.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are there resources available once my adoption is finalized?2020-02-23T16:11:09-05:00

Yes! The Michigan Post Adoption Resource Centers (PARC) are here to support families through their life long journey of adoption. The centers provide services to individuals who are under the age of 21, who were adopted from Michigan’s foster care system or who were adopted through an international adoption or direct consent/direct placement adoption. PARC will provide families with educational trainings, advocacy, coordination of services and case management services.

To learn more about Post Adoption Resources please visit:

Is there financial assistance available if I choose to foster or adopt a child?2020-02-23T16:10:32-05:00

The Adoption Subsidy Program provides financial support subsidy and/or medical subsidy for families adoption children from the foster care system. There is also financial assistance available for those who provide foster care. Support subsidy assists with the payment of expenses related to caring for and raising the child. Medical subsidy assists with the costs of necessary treatment for physical, mental, or emotional conditions which existed, prior to adoption. Neither is meant to cover all expenses incurred in raising a child; rather, these payments are meant to help offset some of the cost. The amount paid is dependent on the needs of the child, not the family.

What is the common age range and background of children for state ward adoptions?2020-02-23T16:07:04-05:00

Children of all races and ethnicities are in foster care and available for adoption. All of these children are considered to have “special needs”. Special needs is defined as a child who has one or combination of the following: emotional, psychological, educational, physical or behavior needs. The degree of these needs varies from child to child, situation to situation. The majority of children waiting in state ward adoption programs are over the age of six and often a part of a sibling group.

Do I have to be married to adopt?2020-02-23T16:12:07-05:00

You do not have to be married to adopt or foster a child or children. Many children thrive in single parent homes. If an unmarried couple is interested in adoption, both adults can be studied as household members, but per Michigan law, only one can legally adopt the child.

Is there a cost to adopting?2020-02-23T16:11:47-05:00

State ward adoption expenses are often minimal. There is no cost for the completion of becoming a licensed foster parent. If you are interested in becoming approved only as an adoptive parent, the home study cost is $2,500. To finalize an adoption, it generally costs up to $300 per child that is paid to the county court.

How long is the adoption process?2020-02-23T16:03:21-05:00

It generally takes a family six months to complete the adoption process from the time an application is completed. The process can go faster or can be delayed based upon the family’s compliance with turning in necessary paperwork, completing required trainings, etc.


“I have been involved with the foster care system for a little over a year. The process was easy and working with Forever Families was so nice. Everyone there treated me with the up most respect. I would definitely recommend Forever Families. They told me what to expect and had no bumps on the road. I really appreciate everyone there, especially Amanda. She made our life so much easier”

Adoptive Parent

“We adopted our 2 year old son March of 2018. Manessa our adoption worker was wonderful to work with. She was always there to answer any questions we had, and she made sure our adoption went quickly and smoothly. We are so blessed to have had her as a part of our journey. The day Draven become forever ours was one of the best day of our lives, and we are forever grateful to Manessa and Forever Families for making that day possible!”

Adoptive Parent

“Forever Families was instrumental in navigating us through the adoption process of our son. Their knowledge and expertise coupled with their compassion and support were essential as we embarked on the journey to expand our family. Adoption is not easy and the road can be rocky with many stops along the way. Having the staff at Forever Families behind us and alongside us made all the difference”

Adoptive Parent

“Forever Families helped us adopt our granddaughter. She will be the youngest of our large family and is spoiled accordingly. Our adoption specialist made sure we understood the process and kept everything in order. Her help navigating through it all made it so much easier for us. Everyone at Forever Families was absolutely professional and we would definitely recommend this agency to anyone that is considering fostering or adopting a child”

Adoptive Parent

“On October 16, 2018, three days after receiving our first placement we were placed with a second child, a baby only 7 weeks old. Fostering baby K into childhood had a lot of ups and downs due to many factors beyond our control. Covid-19 also had a major impact on our case, as I am sure with many cases; postponing the trial date 14 times. Outside of a few more hiccups, filing for adoption went pretty smoothly. Thankfully Macomb county pushed it through so that we were able finalize our adoption of K, at the end of 2021. We have loved him since the moment he was dropped off, even before. His favorite thing was sitting in daddy’s arms, or his ‘lazy boy’ as I would call it. He is very smart, loving and very inquisitive. His favorite holiday is Christmas but he also loves dressing up for Halloween. Adopting through Forever Families has been largely a positive experience, despite all the challenges that we faced along the way. This was our second adoption and we are willing to do one more. Fostering and Adoption is not the easiest journey, which is why I suppose that it is not for everyone. Yet, the rewards of being able finally adopt our beautiful boys has been a reward in of itself. Our sons may have had their own journeys that led them to us but they made us a family and they made our house a home. We love our beautiful family and I would not change a thing that brought us to this moment!”

Adoptive Parent

Contact an Adoption Agency in Livonia, MI

If you have any questions or concerns please feel free to reach out to our Adoption Supervisor or Submit an Inquiry Form. Nicole Larabell- Adoption Supervisor

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