When residents of Louisiana contemplate adopting a child, they usually give primary consideration to the evaluations that will be performed. While these evaluations are usually the key to a successful adoption application, those considering adopting a child should also familiarize themselves with the strict legal hurdles that must be cleared.

A person must be at least 21 to legally complete a foster care adoption. People who are at least 18 can usually complete a private adoption. All those wishing to adopt must have “sufficient income to meet their own basic needs.” The adopting parents must either own or rent adequate housing. The housing must be safe and sanitary with adequate room for the entire family.

Parents who wish to adopt must demonstrate a stable living arrangement, no wish or plans to move, and no financial, marital or emotional difficulties. Prospective adoptive parents must complete 21 hours of training in Model Approach to Partnership in Parenting.

People may be absolutely barred from adopting if they have been convicted of any of the following crimes:

Substantiated incidents of abuse or neglect

First or second degree murder

Manslaughter

Kidnapping

Criminal neglect of family

Criminal abandonment

Felony carnal knowledge of a juvenile and other sex crimes involving juveniles

Contributing to the delinquency of juveniles or cruelty to juveniles

Child desertion

Cruelty to the infirm

The state of Louisiana has a number of non-profit adoption agencies whose employees can answer many questions about whether a person is eligible to become an adoptive parent. A knowledgeable family lawyer can also provide assistance regarding question of eligibility. The requirements and limitations stated above are the objective criteria listed in Louisiana statutes. The agency that arranges and coordinates the adoption may have many more or less objective standards that an adopting parent must satisfy.