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Home Study Services

Thank you for your interest in La Vida International’s independent home study and post placement services. La Vida is a non-profit, Hague Accredited agency with programs in China. We have extensive experience conducting home studies for both Hague Convention and non-Hague Convention inter-country adoption and domestic adoption. We can conduct home studies for Hague Convention countries where the adoption is legally finalized in the child’s country, before they return home to the U.S.

Service Fee/Process

Our fee for an independent home study ranges between $2,300 (2 visits) and $2,550 (4 visits). When you complete and return the necessary home study paperwork, we assign a social worker and the report will be completed within 30 to 45 days from the time of case assignment. From receipt of the study by the social worker, our internal review and report finalization process takes up to 2 weeks. During that time we will forward a draft of the study to you for review. Once the home study is finalized we will provide the necessary number of copies to your attorney or child placing agency.

If you are adopting internationally and filing your own immigration service application an original copy of your study will be provided directly to you. We also provide optional United States Citizenship and Immigration Service filing assistance.  Further information about this service is provided below.

Timeframe

How quickly you compile the necessary paperwork for your home study will largely determine how quickly a home study is completed. Once all of your paperwork is returned to us, and we are able to assign a caseworker, that caseworker then has 30 to 45 days to complete the home visit and report. Once your social worker submits the report to our director for review, please allow 2 weeks for necessary changes and editing. We will send a draft copy to you for review and then to your agency for its' final review before finalizing the report.

Generally speaking, from start to finish home studies take 6 to10 weeks. We do offer expedition services for an additional fee of $200 for those families who are under time constraints. Expedited home studies reduce the time the social worker has to do the study by half, to just 2 to 3 weeks. Additionally, the in-office review is done in 1 week. For those families, requesting an expedited home study for a country which requires 4 separate face to face contacts, the timeframe for the social worker will be 3 weeks.

Training Requirements for Inter-country Adoption

Please note that all families for whom we complete an international home study participate in one or two online training classes. The cost of the standard Hague Convention compliant training (approximately 12 hours) is $135 per applicant.

Home Study Guideline Information

Because each agency/country has its own requirements, we require that you have your child placing agency/attorney forward any home study guidelines (as a Microsoft Word document) or special requirements for the direct conduct of the home study as soon as possible. If your placing agency/country has no specific guidelines please have the agency send us a short note informing us of this. Our e-mail address for communication is info@lavida.org .

Child Placing Agency/Attorney/Country Requirements Which Fall Outside the Scope of the Home Study

If your attorney or child placing agency has other requirements for home study provider agencies which significantly exceed that of the conduct of a home study, the time and cost involved in providing those materials/information would be assessed on an individual basis and is not included in the cost of the home study. Before initiating services, we routinely require that you ask your attorney/child placing agency e-mail us a copy of all contracts, agreements and materials which may fall into this category, including any dossier materials which would require work efforts on our part. A review of this material will enable us to ascertain whether your agency has significant requirements that fall outside the scope of a home study.

Post Placement Supervision

Our fees for independent post placement services are $500 per report. Sample post placement agreements are included in the portfolio linked below . Please note that, if your attorney/placing agency has differing or additional requirements, the agreement would be modified accordingly.

United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) Application Processing (for inter-country adoption only )

We offer an optional service which includes providing you with detailed instructions for the preparation of the Form I-800A (Application for Determination of Suitability to Adopt a Child from a Convention Country) or Form I-600A (Application For Advance Processing of Orphan Petition). We subsequently review your application and file it on your behalf with the National Benefits Center. Lastly we monitor receipt of your preliminary approval and address any needs which may arise during the pre-approval process.  Please contact us if you may be interested in this service.

Your Independent Home Study Portfolio

Below you will find a link to the Independent Home Study Portfolio. Your portfolio is a collection of general information and service specific documents for your review. The information is contained in one of two folders; one for inter-country adoption and the other for U.S. domestic adoption.

www.lavida.org/Independent-Home-Study-Portfolio-10-25-13.pdf

You must have the free Adobe Reader program version 10.0 or higher to properly view the portfolio.  Click here to download or to upgrade an older version.

How Can I Learn More About What is Involved in the Home Study Process?

Please visit our page entitled "Just What is a Home Study?".

How Do I Begin the Home Study Process?

If you would like La Vida to initiate the home study process for your family, please complete the application included in your portfolio and mail it to us along with 50% of the fee, the Agreement for Independent Home Study Services and if you are completing an inter-country adoption, please also return the document entitled “Understanding and Preparing for an International Adoption and Waiver of Liability”.

Additionally, please ask your attorney/child placing agency to forward any home study guidelines, contracts, agreements and any materials which would require work efforts on our behalf but which fall outside the scope of the conduct of a home study. Your agency may e-mail the materials to info@lavida.org or they may be mailed via regular mail.

Upon review and acceptance of your application and of your attorney/child placing agency's requirements, via e-mail, we will promptly send you the necessary materials to begin the home study process and we will guide you through the process. If for any reason your application is not accepted, your fee will be promptly and fully refunded.

Should you have any questions about the home study process or any of the information contained in this e-mail, please do not hesitate to call or write Emily Bell, Adoption Coordinator.

La Vida International 
101 Lindenwood Drive, Suite 225, Malvern, PA  19355
Phone: 484-318-8543 / 484-318-8562
e-mail:
info@lavida.org web: www.lavida.org