Adoptions in Utah are generally considered to be “private” when the process of placing a child for adoption does not involve an adoption agency or the government’s foster care system. Instead, they typically occur when adoptive parents and birth parents connect through a mutual friend, acquaintance, or family member.
By not requiring the involvement of a licensed adoption agency, the overall cost of a private adoption can be substantially lower than a traditional agency adoption. The adoption process still requires the involvement of the court system for relinquishment, placement, orders for temporary custody, and more. Having good legal advice throughout the adoption process can be critical to ensuring a successful outcome.
The private adoption process often begins with conversations or discussions between birth parents and prospective adoptive parents, leading to an informal agreement to place the child for adoption. But any such agreement between the birth parents and adoptive parents would be meaningless with the involvement of the court system and the final approval of a judge.