Private Adoption – Legal Placement

(Legal Placement has been made)


Notice: Representation by an Attorney is mandatory for all parties, and the birth parent(s) must be represented by a separate attorney.


What I need to do for the Private Adoption:

  • Form 18.0 – A Petition for Adoption may be filed if proper legal placement has been made by either legal custody, guardianship, or if the petitioner is a grandparent of the adoptee.


For the Birth Father:

  • In cases where paternity has not been established, you must mail in Form JFS 1695 Application for Search of Ohio Putative Father Registry to Columbus and file the final search result.
  • If the father is not on the birth certificate, but paternity has been established, you must provide the Court with a copy of the DNA results or paternity affidavit.


For the Birth Parents:

  • If either parent is deceased, a certified copy of the death certificate must be filed.
  • If they live out of state and are willing to consent, 18.3 – Consent to Adoption must be filed.
  • If they are not willing to consent and consent can be proven not necessary, indicate on the Petition and provide the last known address for each parent. Complete an Affidavit (Civ R 4.4) and Form AD.2.3 – Order for Publication if the residence is unknown.
  • If they wish to consent, a notice of appearance must be filed, they must complete a birth parent assessment, and they must appear before the Court for a relinquishment hearing.


For the Birth Parent(s) Attorney:

Prepare these forms and deliver them, unsigned, to the Court the day before the relinquishment hearing. They are to be signed at the hearing. Note: The relinquishment hearing is held no earlier than 72 hours after the birth parent assessment.

  • Form AD.6.1 – Application for Approval of Placement.
  • Form 18.3 – Consent to Adoption.
  • Form AD.6.3 – Withdrawal of Consent.
  • Form AD.7 – Addendum to Consent.


Fill out and file these forms/materials:

  • Form 18.0 – Petition for Adoption of Minor.
  • Certified copy of the long form birth certificate of the child (contains doctor and hospital’s name).
  • Certified copy of the custody/guardianship order.
  • Certified copy of the Petitioner’s Marriage License Abstract/Application (from the Court that issued the license).
  • Certified copy of the original Birth Certificate for the petitioner(s).
  • If applicable, a certified copy of the divorce decree and child support orders of both parents and a current CSEA printout if support is being paid out from a previous relationship/marriage (from the Court that issued the divorce decree).
  • Form 18.9 – Petitioner’s Account (must be filed with the Petition).
  • Form JFS 1691 – Application for Child Placement (include all household members).
  • Four Letters of Reference (all letters to include how long they have known the petitioner, a specific reference to the petitioner’s family unit, and an original signature).
    • One letter from a clergy member or employer
    • If self-employed, a letter from a co-worker
    • Three letters from non-relatives (in-laws are considered relatives)
  • Form AD.2.2 – Instructions for Criminal Background Checks and Results.
  • Form Ohio-CR – Instructions and Request for Ohio’s Central Registry on Child Abuse and Neglect and Results.
  • Form JFS 1681 – Application Financial Statement.
  • Form JFS 1653 – Medical Statement for Adoption Applicant and All Household members over 18 (within 1 year of filing).
  • Form AD.2.2.a – Physician’s Report on Child to be Adopted (within 6 months of filing).
  • Form JFS 1616 – Social Medical History (must be submitted prior to the birth parent assessment).
  • Form AD.2.1 – Order for Home Study Assessment (signed by attorney). All persons living in the home must be present for the home study, including children.
  • Form AD.2.3 – Affidavit and Order for Publication (if applicable).
  • Form 18.9 – Final Accounting (must be filed before the final hearing will is set).
  • Form 18.1 – Judgment Entry Setting Hearing and Ordering Notice.
  • Form 18.7 – Final Decree of Adoption.
  • Form HEA 2757 – Certificate of Adoption.


Filing Fees:

  • The filing fee is $714 for the first child and $314 for each additional child.
  • If you use a credit card, a 3% charge will be added.
  • The attorney fee for the birth parent(s) is the responsibility of the petitioners.