Private Adoption

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

An adoption agency or approved assessor must complete Form JFS 1616 – the Birth Parent Assessment, Social Medical History; Form 1673 – Home Study; Form 1699 – Prefinalization Report; and monthly Post Placement Reports.


Attorney for the Adopting Family must file/prepare the following to open the case where an adoptive placement needs to be made:

  • Form 19.4.2 – Application for Placement for Adoption by Adoptive Parent(s).
  • Notices of Appearance for both attorneys.
  • Form 18.9 – Petitioner's Preliminary Accounting
  • Form 19.4.3 – Affidavit of Birth Father and Birth Mother at Placement
  • Form 19.4.4 – Birth Mother's Acknowledgment of Rights to Contest Adoption Decree
  • Form 19.4.5 – Agreement to Pay Expenses
  • Form 19.4.6 – Filing of Home Study by Prospective Adoptive Parents.
  • Form JFS 1673 – Home Study, with copy of BCI final report (FBI if applicable).
  • Form JFS 1693 – Ohio Laws and Adoption Materials (and case notes.)
  • In cases where the birth father is not listed on the adoptee's birth certificate, the attorney must file Form JFS 1695 - Application for Search of Ohio Putative Father Registry to Columbus, and FILE the final search result.


Attorney for the Adopting Family must file the following before the Final Hearing is set:

  • Form 18.0 – Petition for Adoption (filed within 90 days of placement).
  • Form JFS 1673 – Homestudy, if not previously filed
  • Form JFS 1616 – Social Medical History (signed and containing non-identifying information).
  • Putative Father Registry – Final Results (if applicable).
  • Form 1699 – Prefinalization Assessment (and all monthly Post Placement Reports).
  • Certified copy of child’s birth certificate (must be long form).
  • Form 18.0.1 – Adoption Application, Marriage/Divorce Information
  • Form 18.0.2 – Custody Affidavit - Adoption
  • Form 18.0.3 – Affidavit Regarding Birth Father (if applicable)
  • Form 18.1 – Judgment Entry Setting Hearing and Ordering Notice.
  • Form 18.3 – Consent to Adoption (if applicable for birth father)
  • Form 18.3.1 – Affidavit of Unknown Name/Residence of Father (if applicable)
  • Form 18.7.1 –  Ohio Department of Health Vital Statistics Certificate of Adoption
  • Form 18.7.2 –  Statement of Adopted Person
  • Form 18.9 – Petitioner’s Final Accounting (must include separate breakdown of expenses paid to the birth mother).

If either parent is deceased, a certified copy of the death certificate must be filed.
If a parent is 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 a Motion and Order for Publication if the residence is unknown.

Note: The final hearing will be set after the child has been placed in the home for six (6) months and all paperwork has been filed.


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 19.4.1 –  Application for Placement for Adoption Made by Birth Parent
Form 18.3 – Consent to Adoption.

Filing Fees:

Filing fee for a Pre-Placement: $23.00 (this fee is separate from the fee for a Private Adoption)

Filing fee for Private Adoption: $702.00 for each child.

If you use a credit card, a three percent (3%) convenience charge will be added.

The attorney fee for the birth parent(s) is the responsibility of the petitioners.

The information contained on this web site is not legal advice, nor should it substitute for the assistance of a qualified attorney. Good legal assistance can speed up the court process and prevent costly legal errors.

Get more information on obtaining an attorney.