To adopt a child in the state of Minnesota, a home study is required. Home studies can be performed by the county or by private adoption agencies.
In an adoption home study, prospective families begin the process of being considered for adoption. It includes being fingerprinted, having a background check and participating in an extensive interview process as well as ongoing training on parenting children who have experienced trauma.
The County only completes adoption home studies for Minnesota waiting children/state wards. This means the parents' right for these children have been terminated and these children are now available for adoption.
Home studies handled by the County
Dakota County only handles adoptive home studies for people who are planning to adopt a Minnesota waiting child/state ward. These children have the following characteristics:
- Children with significant special needs because of impairments due to emotional, behavioral, developmental or medical/physical conditions.
- Sibling groups of two or more children where one child meets one or more of the conditions described above.
- Children with a high risk of developing special needs due to traumatic past experiences and/or birth family histories.
Private adoption agencies
If you want to adopt outside of the above target populations, please contact a private adoption agency.
For a complete list of private adoption agencies in Minnesota, please go to the MN Adopt website
If you want to adopt a child in the target populations through Dakota County, the first step is to attend an Informational Meeting. Informational meetings are scheduled twice a month, every other month. Contact Laurie Sjodin-Ernste at 952-891-7370 for more information.