Over the years more and more companies are offering adoption benefits to their adoptive parent employees. Typically these benefits come in three different ways: adoption information, financial assistance and parental leave polices.
Adoption Information - Some companies may offer referrals to licensed adoption agencies or other helpful adoption organizations.
Financial Assistance - From a lump sum payment to coverage of only certain adoption fees, to even partial reimbursement for adoption expenses, if your employer offers adoption benefits, it's important to find out the details of the coverage.
Some companies offer a higher reimbursement rate for employees adopting special needs children. While still others will assist with some international adoption fees as well as birth mother and counseling fees with a domestic adoption.
Parental Leave - The Family and Medical Leave Act, a federal law, requires employers with 50 or more employees to offer parents up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave upon the birth or adoption of a child (or placement of a foster child). The law continues to direct that the employers are supposed to hold the job open for the employee and continue health benefits during the leave.
Eligibility - Some adoption benefits may be determined based upon full or part time working status or the length of time employed by the company. Also, the type of adoption may impact the adoption benefit offered. A stepparent adoption may not be eligible for the employer sponsored adoption benefit. Again, begin by asking your company questions regarding adoption benefits.
See the Adoption-Friendly Workplace Program operated by the National Adoption Center in collaboration with the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption for more information and helpful tools. They offer a listing of the Best Adoption-Friendly Workplaces each year.