Learn more about growing your family through adoption.


How much does it cost to adopt?

Our agency is unique because we encourage families to apply with multiple agencies. There is a one-time application fee of $2000. This fee includes:

a. Application to Heart to Heart Adoptions

b. Lifetime membership for Our Hearts Connect

c. Lifetime access to all courses on Creating a Family

We have a low-risk policy.  If you have a failed placement, only 10% of your adoption fees are at risk. There are no add–ons or surprise fees at the end.

There are three types of expenses that are associated with our adoptions.
The first is the ADOPTION FEE. The full agency fee for all situations is $48,000. Based on certain situations and family income, some active families may apply and be approved for a subsidy. Additionally, the fee for specific special needs situations fee may be lowered.

The second expense is MEDICAL COSTS.  Some of our birth mothers do not have medical insurance. The adoptive family assumes all of the medical expenses that are not otherwise covered.  This includes doctor visits, emergency room visits, hospital costs, and pediatrician costs. The medical expenses can vary by state and hospital. Most families will pay between $3,000 – $10,000 for a full medical situation.

The third fee is the LEGAL FEES. The majority of the time, the legal fees for placement are built directly into the full agency fee. In rare state-to-state circumstances, additional legal fees may apply. If this is the case, you will know those additional legal costs prior to being matched.

Almost all babies that have Native American heritage require additional legal work. The birth mother is required to go before a judge and state she understands the laws regarding the Indian Child Welfare Act and that she is choosing to place her child outside of the tribe. This is usually an additional cost of $4,500.

The fee for a HOME STUDY in Utah is $1000, which includes post-placement visits.

We will discuss your adoption budget with you before you become active with our agency.

We will discuss all fees associated with each situation with you before we show your profile to any potential match situations.

How long will we have to wait before we get our baby?

Wait times vary significantly depending on each unique situation. At Heart to Heart Adoptions, we understand that the anticipation of adopting a child can come with uncertainties about wait times. Factors such as specific preferences can influence how long prospective adoptive families may wait for a match, typically between six to 18 months.

Prospective adoptive families may experience slightly longer wait times if they have specific preferences in some or all of the following categories.

  • Want a specific gender.
  • Want a specific race.
  • Cannot pay for medical costs.
  • Are single.
  • Are older.
  • Have multiple biological children.
  • Reside in states with complex adoption laws.

We have even had families get matched and have a placement within days of becoming active. The important thing to remember is that the baby that is right for your family will come in his or her own time.

What is a home study?

The Adoptive Pre-Placement Evaluation, generally called a “Home Study,” is to help prepare you for adoption and ensure that you meet agency and state requirements.

If you already have a current home study, we will assure you that it is in compliance with Heart to Heart Adoption’s standards.

The home study consists of one or more interviews, as well as written information provided by you and others. You may ask your social worker questions at any time during the home study process. The written material includes medical background, information about your marriage and family, parenting styles, and finances. Reference letters will also be requested from 3 individuals, including 1 related family member and 2 non-family member references.

We accept completed adoptive home studies from other sources that adhere to similar professional adoption standards, such as Heart to Heart Adoptions. In addition, if we complete an adoptive home study for you, we are happy to forward it to other adoption agencies with which you may be working.

Do you place with single parents?

Yes, we do place with single parents.  However, most of our birth families are looking for a two-parent family. Please call our office if you are a single parent and hoping to adopt at 801-563-1000.

What is the difference between private, open, and semi-open adoptions?

Open adoption means the openness of communication and contact between birth parents and adoptive families following placement. Heart to Heart helps to facilitate and maintain a healthy relationship between the birth parents and the adoptive family for the best long-term interest of the child. We take into consideration both parties’ desires and seek adoptive families who are willing to have as much contact and communication as the birth parents desire over time. That may mean becoming more open with communication and contact as time goes by.

Closed adoption means the birth family and adoptive family do not have any direct contact. There is a myth that closed adoptions are safer. In actuality, closed adoptions are based on fear and control. Heart to Heart does not advocate for adoptive families who prefer closed adoptions.

Most adoptions fall somewhere in between open and closed. This is called a semi-open adoption. In this situation, neither the adoptive family nor the birth parent has the other’s direct contact information.  In these situations, Heart to Heart Adoptions acts as a facilitator by receiving information from one party and forwarding it to the other, ensuring the respectful exchange of information between parties while maintaining privacy and confidentiality.

Communication in adoption can take various forms, including sharing pictures, letters, emails, engaging in conference calls facilitated by a third party, or utilizing our social media portal, Our Hearts Connect.

It’s important to recognize that relationships in adoption evolve over time. What starts as one type of arrangement may transition into something entirely different. Heart to Heart supports families in navigating these changes, encouraging ongoing communication and openness to best address the child’s evolving needs and curiosity about their history.

How do you match an adoptive family with an expectant mother?

Although we will do all we can to place a child with your family, we cannot guarantee placement.

Many factors influence the selection process that includes, but are not limited to, the number of approved applicants, the number of children available for adoption, the birth parents, and your preferences.  However, we will present your profile as often as we can to birth parents that match your criteria. Obviously the broader your criteria, the more often you will be presented.

We will ask permission and let you know each time we present your profile. Once your profile is selected by a birth mother, we generally arrange for a conference call between you and the birth parents. If you both are pleased with each other, we consider you matched.

When you are matched, you begin to share the financial responsibility for the birth mother with the agency. At that time, you will work with our financial department to fully understand all financial obligations associated with that situation. We generally charge half the overall fee at the match, and the other half at the time of placement.

Where do you find the women who place their babies for adoption?

We primarily advertise our adoption services to potential birth mothers on the Internet.

We also have many expectant mothers who are referred to us by previous clients.

What can you tell us about the expectant mothers that come to your agency?

Our agency works with a diverse group of expectant mothers, ranging in age from 14 to 44 and representing various races and backgrounds. Each woman brings a unique personality and story to the adoption process.

What unites these expectant mothers is their profound love for their child and their courageous efforts to provide the best possible future for their babies.

On average, our expectant mothers are around 26 to 28 years old, with many already parenting other children or facing challenges such as having children removed from their care. A significant number of these mothers approach us during crisis situations, dealing with issues like homelessness, abuse, lack of family support, substance use, or mental health concerns.

Prospective adoptive families often inquire about the expectant mothers’ plans during pregnancy and specific timelines. However, it’s crucial to understand that these women, many of whom are navigating this process for the first time, may not have all the answers upfront. Flexibility and acceptance of evolving circumstances are key as we support them through their journey.

Our agency is dedicated to providing comprehensive support and resources to these expectant mothers, helping them navigate challenges and make informed decisions for themselves and their babies.

What should I expect at the hospital when the birth mother is in labor?

The hospital time is a time of great stress for the birth mother, and she needs great flexibility. We talk with each birth mother beforehand about her desires for the hospital. This includes:

  • Who does she want in the room during labor?
  • Who does she want in the room during delivery?
  • Does she want to hold the baby right after birth?
  • Who will get the second hospital band? (The band that allows admittance into the nursery. The birth mother will get the first.)
  • How much time does she want to spend with the baby in the hospital?
  • How much does she want to visit with the adoptive family in the hospital?

We will tell you the birth mother’s wishes before you go to the hospital.  However, it is very important to remember that the birth mother’s wishes will probably change once she enters the hospital.  It is important to be flexible.

Remember, most birth mothers have never done this before.  It is impossible for your birth mother to predict how she will feel or react to any given situation.

Your case manager will be in contact with you and guide you throughout this process.

What do we say to the expectant mother when we first talk or meet?

When engaging with an expectant mother for the first time, it’s crucial to approach the conversation with empathy and sensitivity. Talk with your case manager about anything specific you should know about what might be good or bad to discuss.

Here are some guidelines on how to navigate this initial interaction:

1. Understand Their Preferences: Prior to meeting or talking with the expectant mother, it’s helpful to consult with the staff member who has been working closely with her. This ensures you’re aware of topics that may be sensitive or meaningful to her.

2. Start with Positive and Neutral Topics: Begin the conversation by asking about her pregnancy and how she’s feeling. Inquire about her interests, future plans, and connections with friends and family. These are generally safe topics that can help establish rapport and build trust.

3. Express Genuine Care: It’s essential for the expectant mother to feel that you genuinely care about her well-being, not just about the baby. Express empathy, listen actively, and show understanding of her situation and emotions.

4. Navigate Sensitive Topics Thoughtfully: While discussing other children or the birth father may be important, approach these topics with sensitivity. Be mindful of her comfort level and readiness to discuss such matters, and avoid pushing for details if she seems hesitant.

5. Find Common Ground: Share your own interests and experiences as well. Finding common ground can foster a sense of connection and mutual understanding, contributing to a more meaningful and supportive relationship.

By approaching the conversation with respect, empathy, and a focus on building a genuine connection, you can create a positive and supportive environment for the expectant mother during this critical time.

What is an appropriate gift or way to say thank you to the birth parents?

When considering an appropriate gift or gesture to express gratitude to birth parents, it’s important to approach the situation with thoughtfulness and sensitivity. Here are some suggestions:

1. Small Tokens of Appreciation Pre-Placement: Before the placement occurs, it’s appropriate to give very small tokens of appreciation or greeting. These could include heartfelt notes, flowers, or small tokens that convey gratitude without being extravagant.

2. Sentimental Gift and Card Post-Placement: After placement, when the relationship has developed further, consider giving a more sentimental gift along with a heartfelt card expressing your gratitude. This could be a personalized keepsake, a meaningful book, or a gift that reflects their interests or hobbies.

3. Avoid Large or Expensive Gifts: It’s essential to avoid giving large or expensive gifts that may be perceived as coercion or undue influence. The focus should be on genuine appreciation and maintaining a respectful relationship.

4. Consider Handmade or Thoughtful Gifts: Handmade gifts or items that hold sentimental value can be especially meaningful. For example, a scrapbook documenting special moments or a personalized piece of artwork can convey heartfelt gratitude.

5. Include Personal Touches: Regardless of the gift chosen, adding personal touches such as handwritten notes, photographs, or shared memories can enhance the sentiment and show that the gift was chosen with care.

6. Respect Their Wishes: Always consider the birth parents’ preferences and wishes regarding gifts and gestures. Some may prefer simple acknowledgments, while others may appreciate more elaborate gestures. Respect their boundaries and comfort levels.

By approaching the gesture of gratitude with sincerity, thoughtfulness, and respect for the birth parents’ wishes, you can convey your appreciation in a meaningful and appropriate way.

What is finalization, and who handles that?

Finalization is a significant milestone in the adoption process, marking the legal completion of the adoption and the transfer of parental rights from the adoption agency to the adoptive parents. Here’s a closer look at what finalization entails and how it is handled:

1. Timeline and Process: Finalization typically occurs after a successful supervisory period, which is usually around 6 months but can vary based on state laws and specific circumstances. During this time, the adoption agency monitors the placement to ensure it is in the best interest of the child.

2. Legal Guardianship: Once finalization is complete, the adoption agency relinquishes legal guardianship of the child, and the adoptive parents become the child’s legal parents with all associated rights and responsibilities.

3. Responsibility for Legal Fees: Adoptive parents are responsible for any legal fees associated with the finalization process. It’s important to budget for these costs and consider selecting independent legal counsel for the adoption proceedings.

4. Choosing Legal Representation: We encourage adoptive parents to find an attorney or agency specialized in adoption within 30 days of placement to handle the finalization process. While we can provide recommendations in some areas, the choice of legal representation ultimately rests with the adoptive parents.

Finalization is an exciting and significant step that formalizes the bond between adoptive parents and their child, granting legal recognition to the family unit created through adoption.

Is the adoption process complete once finalization is done?

Adoption is a lifelong journey. Finalization marks the completion of the legal aspects of adoption, but it’s just the beginning of your family’s adoption story.

You’ll continue to nurture your relationship with the birth family and navigate various challenges as your child grows and develops.

How do we address our child's questions about adoption as they grow?

At Heart to Heart Adoptions, we believe in openness and honesty when it comes to adoption. We encourage families to discuss adoption and the child’s birth family from infancy onward, making it a natural and ongoing conversation as the child matures.

Every child and family is unique, so it’s important to tailor your approach to match the child’s age and level of understanding. You can find support and guidance from adoptive family social media groups, where experiences are shared, and through books that address adoption-related topics.

If you have specific concerns or questions about navigating conversations about adoption with your child, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us. We’re here to support you every step of the way.

How do we go from infertility to adoption?

Many of the families who come to us seeking adoption have faced challenges with infertility. Coping with infertility involves navigating a significant loss, which can often go unrecognized or undiscussed, adding to the emotional difficulty.

Adoption is a wonderful option for those unable to have children biologically. However, it’s crucial to address the grief and loss associated with infertility before pursuing adoption. Adoption is about building a family, not replacing a desired child. It’s also important to note that the adoption process itself can be emotional and stressful.

We advise families to pause fertility treatments or pregnancy attempts while pursuing adoption to focus fully on the adoption journey. Moving from infertility to adoption often involves experiencing stages of grief and loss, including denial, anger, bargaining, sadness, and acceptance.

It’s essential for both partners to openly discuss and process these emotions, recognizing that everyone moves through grief at their own pace. Both parents must feel emotionally ready to embrace adoption. Adoption should never be pursued solely to please a spouse.

If you’re unsure about your feelings or need support during this transition, consider joining an infertility support group, speaking with other couples who have gone through similar experiences, consulting with a counselor, or exploring books on the topic.

Our Amazing Adoptive Family Team