If you are considering forming or growing your family through adoption, the best first thing you can do is to talk with an adoption professional. In many states, that will be an adoption agency with adoption counselors available. Or, it could be an adoption attorney.
The Academy of Adoption and Assisted Reproduction Attorneys (AAAA) maintains a a state-by-state listing of adoption attorneys, all of whom are happy to talk with you and make sure you are headed in the right direction for your family. AAAA also provides a directory of adoption agencies affiliated with our Fellows.
Talking with an adoption professional does not obligate you to pursue adoption, but it is important for you to have your questions answered regarding cost, timing, home studies, birth parent rights in your state, and the legal process. This will help you to evaluate adoption among your other options. It is your right and responsibility to be informed.