Thursday, November 16, 2006

OK, you’re approved – great – so now what?!?!

Gee wiz, the paperwork starting to get rolling and the task list will be growing.

Our approval letter came with quite a bit of paperwork - several questionnaire/interview type pages. It’s almost like a more intense application. There are questions about how we handle personal matters within our marriage, finances (of course), and our parenting philosophy.

There are also a few pages (yes – plural) about how we’ll handle the fact that this adoption will create an ethnically diverse family. I did not expect a request for this much detail in written form – I figured it would be part of the interview process. We did discuss the ethnicity issue a fair amount before deciding to go international. This is something we must continue to consider going forward.

It seems like the obvious question is, what’s next? In fact, we’ve gotten that question a number of times, along with “how long till you bring her home?”

Well here’s a brief summary schedule as best I can create it. The bottom line is – we’re not looking at bringing home our daughter anytime sooner than a year from now. And much of that timetable is out of our control.

Disclaimer – I’m going off of general information at this point – this all will likely change once we go through the education class and learn the process in depth.

1) Send in pre-approval form – done
2) Get pre-approved – done
3) Send in formal application and app fee – done
4) Receive formal approval – done
5) Bethany receives referral forms from our references – in progress.
6) Fill out personal questionnaires - in progress.
7) Attend education class – December 4
8) Home Study process – interviews, house visit, background checks, etc.
9) Obtain all kinds of government forms – birth certificates (must be newly issued), fingerprints, Homeland Security nonsense (oops – did I say that?), etc. This is commonly referred to as the “Paper-Chase”.
10) Send forms and home study info to Guatemala (translated into Spanish of course).

All of the above should take approximately 4-5 months from now to complete. This could vary depending on how much trouble we have getting certain documents – but if we keep at it; we should get it done by April. Then it becomes less predictable.

11) Receive acceptance from Guatemala government.
12) Receive a referral – which literally means they identify a child for us. This could take anywhere from 2 weeks to 5 months.
13) Wait again for health screening, DNA matching with birth mother (to make sure she’s on the up and up). Once we get that DNA match – we might be able to make a brief visit. This process could take months as well.
14) Guatemala govt and US Embassy process the adoption and immigration paperwork. This can take an un-predictable amount of time, and we may be required to submit more forms or not. This will be the “waiting game”.
15) The immigration and adoption will receive approval and we’ll have an appointment at the embassy.
16) Travel to Guatemala – for about 7 days – returning to the USA with our daughter!!!

That’s the basics – maybe more details than you wanted, but in reality it’s going to be something like 100 or 150 steps, so 16 really is a summary!!!

Please continue to pray and encourage us!!!


Post a Comment

<< Home