When you make the decision to adopt a child, there are many factors to consider. You need to ensure you have the right home environment to care for a child and meet the necessary requirements for adoption approval. 

Adoptions are often expensive and the laws can vary greatly from state to state. If you are considering adopting a child, knowing the adoption rules in Mississippi is an important first step. 

State requirements  

For you to file paperwork to adopt in Mississippi you need to have been a state resident for a minimum of 6 months. Both single adults and couples may adopt. 

A child must be a minimum of three days old before birth parents may consent to adoption, and if the child is over 14 years of age, you need his or her consent. Adoption agencies also require that applicants filing to adopt be a minimum of 21 years old. 

Parental consent 

Adoption requires consent from the birth parents. In addition to any living parents, guardians of an abandoned child, previous people granted custody or the agent who placed the child in foster care may give the consent for adoption. 

There are circumstances where you do not need consent. If the birth parents hurt the child, withheld nourishment or abused substances, an adoption may occur without their consent. 

Finalization requirements 

The court does not finalize adoptions until the child has resided with the family for a minimum of six months. Factors considered include whether you are able to provide the child with a stable environment and regular transportation for him or her. 

Adoption process  

To complete an adoption, you need to complete an agency form and verify your eligibility. Checking references and police records are common in the process. In addition, you may make a post-adoption contact agreement with the birth parents that addresses what interaction they may have with the child after adoption.