3 Things to Know About the Adoption Process in Ontario


Young brother and sister, running and smiling while enjoying some time in the park with their adoptive father.


When planning to adopt, many questions can arise before you start the process. It can be overwhelming to begin a lengthy journey of welcoming a new addition to your family, not to mention the legal process involved. Resources such as Canada Adopts can be helpful for answering questions, but we’ve tried to identify and explain three points in this article that are on the minds of all adoptive parents when they’re just starting out.


Eligibility to Become an Adoptive Parent

You don’t have to be married or even partnered to adopt a child. A couple or single person can apply to be adoptive parents. The eligibility requirements consist of the following:


  1. Willing to make a life-long commitment to a child.

  2. 18 or older.

  3. A resident of Ontario.

  4. If you have a spouse or common-law partner, you must submit an adoption application together.

  5. Able to provide a home that meets basic safety requirements.


Race, ethnicity, religion, languages, and sexual orientations do not factor into the process of adoption. There is also no income requirement for adoption.


There Are Different Types of Adoption

In Ontario, there are four categories of adoption:


  1. Public adoption

  2. Private adoption

  3. International adoption

  4. Adoption of a stepchild or relative


The process of each type of adoption can vary widely. A public adoption focuses on children in the extended care of a children’s aid society. Private adoption works through a licensed agency or individual. Licensed agencies are always needed for international adoptions. Close relatives of the child can adopt through an order with the Ontario court.


How Much It Costs

The cost will vary depending on the category of child that you want to adopt. It will depend on whether you want to adopt a child within Canada or internationally. It also depends on whether you want to pursue a private or public adoption, as described in the previous section. Public adoptions come with no fee. Private adoptions can cost $15,000+ if the child is born in Canada. If they are overseas the cost can go up from there.


Don’t let the complexity of adoption overshadow this happy time for your family. Let TMB Law help with your adoption process. Contact our team of qualified lawyers to find assistance with your case today.