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Juvenile Adoptions FAQ

The fee is $20.00 per child.

There is a fee for the investigation that is conducted by the Health and Human Services Agency.

The length of time depends upon several factors:

  • The Petitioner(s) will be required to submit several documents, including certified copies of birth certificates, a marriage certificate, prior divorce decrees, employment verifications, letters of reference and consents, etc. 
  • A home study and recommendation must be prepared by court investigators or the Health and Human Services Agency, depending upon which type of adoption proceeding you file. 
  • The parental rights of one biological parent may need to be terminated.  

An adoption can take anywhere from approximately six months to a year to complete.

The adoptive parents or adopted child may request a copy of the adoption paperwork which states the date and place of adoption, the child's birth date, the names of the adoptive parents, and the name the child has taken. A release of any other information requires an order from the court.  Forms are available in the clerk's office to petition the court for information.

To request an interpreter, a party should submit the Interpreter Request/Cancellation form (SDSC Form #ADM-348) as far in advance of the hearing as possible. Find more information on the Court’s Language Access page.