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Apply to adopt a child

Give a child in need a loving, stable home. Learn how to apply to adopt a child in Massachusetts.

DCF Foster Care/Adoptive Recruitment

The Details

What you need

Children of all ages, ethnicities, and backgrounds are waiting to be adopted in Massachusetts. When you make the choice to adopt, you have the chance to start or expand your own family and give a child in need safety, stability, and love. The process is similar when you apply to be a foster parent.

How to apply

Contact DCF to let us know that you’re interested in adoption. Call (800) 543-7508.

Complete a request to be contacted or email

Next steps

  1. Pass a background record check.

    DCF will conduct a background check on everyone in your home over the age of 14.

  2. Pass a DCF household physical standards check.

    A social worker will visit your home for a Physical Standards Check. We verify that your home has working safety equipment, such as working smoke detectors, and that the living and sleeping quarters in your home provide adequate space, privacy, and safety for all family members.

    If your home does not meet one or more of our standards, you are given time to comply and we will do a follow-up visit.

  3. Attend the Massachusetts Approach to Partnerships in Parenting (MAPP) training program.

    Check the training schedule to pick a date that works best for you.

  4. A MAPP social worker writes a license study.

    A social worker from your MAPP program will:

    • Visit your home and meet with household members
    • Request and check personal references
    • Write a license study that describes your family and recommends what adoption situation would be a good fit for you
  5. DCF reviews your home study and approves you and your family for one or more children.

    When DCF approves your application to adopt a child, they’ll start work to find a child who could thrive in your family. Learn more about the placement process to adopt a child.

More info

You can attend an adoption informational meeting to learn more about how you can help change the life of a child through adoption. Check ahead to see if you need to RSVP before attending.



DCF Foster Care/Adoptive Recruitment
600 Washington St., 6th Floor, Boston , MA 02111


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