If you are considering becoming a foster parent or adopting a foster child in your home, that is a wonderful thing. The State of California is on your side to help provide you with the necessary resources to facilitate your parenting of a foster child. At the same time, however, the state is primarily interested in the welfare of the foster child and so will want to make a review of your home to ensure that you are properly equipped to care for that child. While this may seem like a challenging administrative hurdle, it is important to remember that it is in the interest of children across the state and that there are resources available to help you overcome this hurdle. Below are a few of the requirements to keep in mind if you are considering becoming a foster parent in California.
An Apartment or a House is Appropriate
Note at the outset that there is no requirement that you live in a house and an apartment that otherwise meets the state’s guidelines will suffice. As the State of California says on its website: “You may rent or own as long as your home is safe and has enough room for family members. What is most important is the love, understanding and guidance you can offer a child.”
State Requirements for Your Home
That said, there are a number of requirements that the state will want to see before approving you:
- No more than two children shall share a bedroom.
- Children of the opposite sex should not share a bedroom.
- A “common purpose” room should not double as a bedroom, meaning there should be no bedroom in an unfinished attic, unfinished basement, garage, hallway, storage area, or shed.
- No bedroom can be used as a common passageway to another room.
- Each child should have his or her own bed with mattress and regularly-cleaned linens, and the beds should be adequately spaced from one another. Infants should have appropriate bassinets or cribs.
- Each child should have appropriate closet or drawer space inside his or her bedroom.
- Unless the child is an infant, no child should share a bedroom with an adult. If the child is an infant, no more than two infants and two parents can share a bedroom.
- The home shall be clean, safe, and sanitary at all times.
- Additional steps should be taken for children under 10 with physical, developmental and/or mental disabilities.
- Steps should be taken to ensure safety in homes with pools, fireplaces, and other dangerous features.
- Smoke detectors and/or sprinklers should be present in the home.
- Waste shall be safely and properly stored and disposed of.
- Bedrooms should have operable windows to allow access for fire safety.
- There should be a yard or outdoor activity space that is safe.
- Proper bathroom facilities must be provided and maintained.
- Dangerous items such as weapons, ammunition, and medicines must be properly stored.
These are only some of the requirements, and an experienced adoption attorney can work with you to ensure that you meet the comprehensive requirements imposed by the state.
Experienced Attorneys for Your California Adoption
Adoption Law Group is a law firm in Southern California dedicated exclusively to adoption.
Our areas of practice include stepparent adoptions, fost-adopt finalizations, agency-assisted adoption finalizations, adult adoptions, guardianships and international readoptions. Contact us today to schedule a consultation.