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Adoption and Foster Care Consequences

If you have been convicted of a crime you may not be able to adopt a child or become a foster parent. A court or foster care agency may deny your request to adopt or foster if you or another adult living in your home have been charged or convicted of any crime. The law says that you can’t adopt or foster a child if you have been convicted of certain felonies (see below).


Felony Convictions

You are not allowed to adopt or foster if you have a felony conviction for:

  • Child abuse or neglect.
  • Spousal abuse.
  • A crime against a child, including child pornography.
  • A violent crime, like rape, sexual assault, even attempted criminal possession of a weapon.
  • A felony for drugs or physical assault within the past 5 years.

If you have been convicted of one of the felonies listed above, you can ask for a Certificate of Relief from Disabilities (CRD) to be allowed to adopt or foster a child. But, even if you get a CRD, the court or foster care agency may still not let you adopt or foster. Visit Collateral Consequences Basics and use a calculator to learn more.

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