You will need to do the following four things to go through with an adoption.

  1. You pick an adoption agency, a lawyer, and/or the adoptive parents.
  2. After you give birth, you—and the birth father, if he is involved—sign the legal papers (called relinquishment papers), and file them with the California Department of Social Services (CDSS). This means you give up your parental rights to the baby.
  3. The baby is placed with the adoptive parents.
  4. A court finalizes the adoption. This usually happens about six months after placement.

You can start talking to people about adoption before the baby is born, but you cannot sign the papers to give your baby up for adoption before the baby is born.


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