Intercountry Adoption Agencies Face Massive Hikes In Regulatory Costs

IAAME

Intercountry adoption advocates fear that the fee structure planned by a new State Department accreditation contractor could threaten the operation of the largest American placing agencies.

The fees required by the Intercountry Adoption Accreditation and Maintenance Entity (IAAME), a recently formed nonprofit that now serves as the sole accreditor for international adoption agencies, are pegged to the number of children placed instead of a fixed structure. That is expected to cost significantly more for the largest placing agencies.

“The Department of State keeps saying, ‘Just pass the fees on to families’ as though intercountry adoption isn’t expensive enough,” said Ryan Hanlon, vice president of education, research and constituent services for the National Council for Adoption (NCFA). “They’re even charging per child for sibling groups.”

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ACT NOW! Ask Your members of Congress to Sign Letter Opposing Drastic USCIS Fee increases for Adoption

REMINDER!

Please call now!

Congressional staff need time to alert the Members of Congress and communicate their interest to the leading offices by noon tomorrow. If you haven’t reached out yet, please pause for a few minutes and do it right now.

I also want to encourage you, if at all possible, to pick up the phone and call first (instead of just emailing or using an online form). We know that reaction time and processing time is slower and level of concern is slower to email and online forms. Congressional staff also report that concern seems higher when people actually make the call. Make the call! Congressional staff are friendly and helpful – you just may make new friends in your Senators’ and Representative’s offices!

Please see tips below on all you need to know!

NCFA Members,

Ask your Members of Congress to sign this letter regarding USCIS’s proposed adoption fee increases. The deadline to sign this letter is noon on this Thursday, June 30th. We’ll have to ask fast!

We encourage you to take 15 minutes to call the DC office of both of your Senators and your Representative. (Find them here.)

Here are some basic suggestions for that call:

1. Ask to speak to the person who handles international adoption issues

2. Ask them to ask their boss to sign the letter increasing USCIS fees for adoptive families

3. Tell them to contact the offices of Senator Blunt, Senator Klobuchar or Representative Franks by noon on Thursday, June 30th to sign the letter.

4. Ask for the staffer’s email to forward them a copy of the letter and explain how to sign on. (Check out the sample email below!)

5. Don’t forget to send that followup email! Polite persistence helps get the job done!

You can send something like the below email to finalize your request:

Dear NAME OF INTERNATIONAL ADOPTION STAFFER,

Thanks for taking my call today! I hope Representative/Senator XYZ will support this letter to prevent burdensome USCIS fee cost increases from impacting adoptive families. 

Join Senators Blunt and Klobuchar, Representative Franks and others in this important effort to support adoptive families.

Please contact Lauren_McCormack@blunt.senate.gov, Shannon_Dorsey@Klobuchar.Senate.gov, or Chelsea.patterson@mail.house.gov by noon on this Thursday, June 30th to sign on to this important letter.

Thanks for supporting adoption!

Megan Lestino
Director of Public Policy & Education
National Council For Adoption

Have you been considering adoption? Now is the time to take that first step!

Have you been considering adoption? Now is the time to take that first step! Give us a call at (336) 899-0068 where you’ll be connected with a Family Coordinator to answer all of your questions.

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Four Reasons Adoption Can Be Expensive

Source: http://showhope.org

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One of the most common questions people ask about adoption is,  “Why is it so expensive? If there are millions of waiting children around the world, why is it so difficult to bring them home?”

Read more.

Do you know someone considering adoption? Share this Free Multimedia Guide on Choosing an Adoption Agency or Attorney

Child%20world%20girl%20kid%20globe%202016 Do you know someone considering adoption? One of the first things they need to do is choose an adoption agency or attorney. Let them know about our FREE Multimedia Guide on Choosing an Adoption Agency or Attorney. We walk you through the process from soup to nuts and provide plenty of resources to make this process as easy as possible.

Adoption Grant Updates and Deadlines, Post-Adoption Financial Resources and More

Grant Updates:

Hope Grafted In – This program will be suspended until they can raise more funds.

One Less Ministry  This program no longer accepts adoption grant applications. Instead will be redirecting funds to human trafficking prevention and no longer offering adoption grants.

A Child Waits Foundation just published its brand new website! Families are now able to get both the grant and loan applications from their website and there is no longer a pre-qualification step in their process.  Anyone who believes that they meet their general criteria as stated on their website can send in an application. A Child Waits Foundation grant and loans are for international adoptions only.  They do NOT have any marital or religious criteria to apply. Check out their new website today and see if you qualify to apply!

Grant Deadlines:

March 2016 Grant Deadlines:

JSC Foundation – March 31
National Adoption Foundation – March 15 (Please note that we cannot recommend this grant organization.)
Ibsen Adoption Network – March 31
Love Has Come – March 31
Muskogee Church of Christ – March 31

April 2016 Grant Deadlines:

Salvation International – April 1
Elijah’s Truth – April 15
Help Us Adopt – April 17
Show Hope – April 30
God’s Grace Adoption Ministries – April 30
Find more updates on our Facebook Page

We Want to Serve You Better!

Improvements, Upgrades and Expansion:

Over the next several months we are working to improve our services to you. We value your feedback and it is very helpful so we can take the needed steps to make sure your needs are met.  If at any time you have any questions, concerns or suggestions, please contact Cherri Walrod at cherri.walrod@gmail.com

We are working on a series of upgrades to our website. This will involve three phases:

1. Upgrade the technology which supports the website:  This will improve the overall function and speed of the website.

2. Upgrade and expand the current database of grants and loans: This will improve the sort, filter and search feature allowing you expanded opportunities to fine tune your search even more.

3. Fundraising Search Tools: This feature should help you narrow down fundraising options which will work best for you. 

Post-Adoption Financial Resources Database  

One of our original goals for Resources4adoption has always been to support adoptive and foster families throughout every phase of their adoption journey. For the last five years we have been dreaming of a way to expand our database to include POST-ADOPTION FINANCIAL RESOURCES Searchable DATABASE. With the new upgrades to the website, this dream can now become a reality.  This will be an expensive and time consuming project, but it will be totally worth it!

We are asking for your help with this project.  If you are an adoptive family it is not a matter of if you will need these resources, it is a matter of when.  There are several ways we need for you to get involved:

1.  Ask your adoption placing agency to contact us about ways they can support this project.  

2. Consider making a small monthly contribution.  If everyone who subscribes to this newsletter would pledge $2 – $5 a month, we would be well on our way to having this new project fully funded!  Here is the link to set up monthly donation. This is such a small investment when you consider how quickly you will be able to find what you need when you need it.  Your gifts are also TAX Deductible!

3. Share with others about this crucial benefit for adoptive families.  If you know of post-adoption financial resources, please be sure to send the info to us.  We already have a lot of information, but we know there’s still more out there.  Post-Adoption Financial Resources includes but is not limited to:  free or reduced cost of therapies, counseling, medical equipment, medical assistance or treatments, modifications to home, transportation assistance, scholarships, grants, parental training or retreats and so on. Email: cherri@resources4adoption.com or cherri.walrod@gmail.com

Welcome to our New Sponsors!

We are so excited to begin a collaborative partnership with Madison Adoption Associates and Building Arizona Families. These two outstanding organizations realize just how important it is to support their adoptive families. By partnering with Resources4adoption, each of their families’ adoption funding needs and concerns are now being addressed. Their families have free access to our database of adoption grants and loans along with personalized coaching they need to successfully fund their adoption.

Bonfire Funds – We are also excited about bringing you more information about this great T-shirt fundraising tool in the near future.  They have one of the best T-shirt fundraising operations around!

Gift of Adoption Fund – We will soon be highlighting some new adoption grant funding opportunities through the Gift of Adoption Fund.  They have been around for quite awhile, and now they have some exciting expansions they want you to be aware of. 

Are you an adoption agency or adoption related business? Want to position your services and brand in front of adoptive hopefuls nationwide? Help us reach more adoptive families with the hope and help they need to fund their adoptions. Contact Cherri Walrod for more information on becoming a sponsor today. Email: cherri@resources4adoption.com or cherri.walrod@gmail.com

FREE to Hopscotch Adoption Families: Your Adoption Finance Coach News and Tips

News and Tips from the Coach

Happy 2016!

Welcome to News and Tips from the Coach, a new monthly newsletter which we will be bringing you every month, filled with financial tips and news to share with your clients and staff.

We realize that putting together the financial side of the adoption process is complicated and confusing.  Our experienced coaches work with families everyday helping them to work through some of the complex areas such as the Adoption Tax Credit, updated loans and grants and how to create a financial strategy that doesn’t wipe out their savings or put them into debt! 

There is no simple answer, as we tell most of our families, but it’s a lot easier if you have a plan — and that’s where our team of Adoption Finance Coaches come in! Each family is assigned their own Coach who has expertise in helping them to create a comprehensive plan that fits their budget 

We hope you’ll find this new resource helpful! We look forward to bringing you each month the most up-to-date adoption financial information, tips and tidbits to share with your team and your families!

Enjoy our first edition and here’s to a prosperous and healthy New Year!

Your Adoption Finance Coach Team
Kelly, Brandi, Elicia, and Cathi

Your Adoption Coach Radio

Even though our radio show is no longer doing LIVE broadcasts we still maintain the content on the show in replays each week.

Each month we’ll be highlighting one of our favorite broadcasts to share with you! 

This months highlight: Adoption Tax Credit, with Becky Wilmoth. Becky and the team at Bill’s Tax Service continue to be a valuable resource to us for information about the Adoption Tax Credit.  Becky as appeared several times on our show to share updates and information about the tax credit.  Click on the image to hear Becky talk about this important topic!

It’s January…start thinking about your TAXES!

Probably THE most asked question that our coaches get is how does the adoption tax credit work and how much is it?  We sponsor twice a year, Becky Wilmoth from Bill’s Tax Service who does a live webinar for our families.  It’s a very popular session, Becky is one of the experts in this area.  If you are a current affiliate agency then your families can register via the agency portal.  All of our webinars are FREE to our families and agencies.

For completed adoptions in 2015, filing in 2016 the Adoption Tax Credit amount is $13,400.  What most do not understand is the fact that it is a credit not refundable and that trips most people up.  A credit reduces the overall tax liability and may or may not produce a refund but in most cases it does.  If you expect your adoption to be complete in 2016, then the credit goes up to $13,460.  This is a small increase compared to previous years, but an increase nonetheless.  If you’d like to learn more about the Adoption Tax Credit, here are some valuable websites and resources for you: 

    Don’t forget to check your State — many have additional tax credits that can be applied to completed adoptions! 

Adoption Finance Coach Fall Boot Camp

Join us for Your Adoption Finance Coach’s Fall Boot Camp!

“Get financially fit for your adoption!”

hopscotch Fall Boot Camp
September 23rd
7pm -8pm CST
Webinar
megan@hopscotchadoptions.org

 

 

Presented By

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Visit Our Host
Meet the Coach!

 

 

Exclusively for our adoption agency clients!

 

Four jam-packed, live weekly sessions starting September 23rd!

 

Join us for these live webinars, every Wednesday evening from 7 PM to 8 PM CST.

 

Sign up now and we will send you information on how to dial-in and log-in to these webinars.

 

Our agenda:

  • Week 1:  Get started creating your budget
  • Week 2:  Tell Your Adoption Story – Network – Dispel the Myths of Adoption
  • Week 3:  Share your Story and Receive – Review Available Grants/Loans
  • Week 4:  Plan your Special Event – Complete your Action Plan

Make your reservation today!

Deadline for registration  is Monday, September 21!

Contact Megan to enroll.

The Details

Your Adoption Finance Coach is a FREE service that we offer to Hopscotch families!

To enroll, email Megan with the subject “Finance Coach” and we’ll get you set up!

How Will You Pay for Your Adoption? Congratulations to the Valenzuela family.

Congratulations to the Valenzuela family.  The site, www.helpusadopt.org, has financially supported so many Hopscotch Adoption families.  The next round of grant applications deadline is drawing near – April 17,2015. This organization supports ALL families of ALL faiths.  Make application today!

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ALERT USCIS FEE INCREASE: Increases will significantly impact I-600 and I-800 cases

 USCIS Fee increase ds-260 revised

USCIS FEE INCREASE: Increases will significantly impact I-600 and I-800 cases.  Effective September 12, 2014, the new Filing Petition for Visa will be $720.  The new Visa Processing fee will increase to $325.00. 

http://travel.state.gov/content/visas/english/fees/fees-visa-services.html#permanent

Notice: Immigrant visa application processing fees are tiered, as shown below, based on the visa category you apply for.

Every visa applicant must pay the visa application processing fee for the visa category being applied for.

Description of Service and Fee Amount (All fees = $ in US currency)

Filing an Immigrant Visa Petition (When collected by U.S. Embassies and Consulates for USCIS. Fees subject to change.)

Immigrant petition for relative (I-130): $420

Orphan (intercountry adoption) immediate relative petition  (I-600, I-800): $720

Immigrant Visa Application Processing Fees (non-refundable, per person)

Immediate relative and family preference applications (processed on the basis of an approved I-130, I-600 or I-800 petition): $325

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