New Mexico foster and adoption guidelines

Thank you for your interest in foster care and/or adoption.

Contact information

Contact: Elisha Arguello, adoption and foster care specialist
Email (Correo Electrónico): elisha.arguello@state.nm.us
Phone (teléfono): 505-257-8750

Things you should know

Foster and adoption licensing requirements

To foster or adopt, it is required that you have an approved homestudy done through the Children, Youth and Families Department of the State of New Mexico. A homestudy is a document that talks about your strengths as a family. This will include interviews with everyone living in your household.

Fostering

Fostering is when you care for a child while their case worker decides if they can be safely reunited with their birth family. Many children are reunited, but many others cannot return to their birth families and need adoptive families.

You can qualify to become a foster family in New Mexico if you are:

  • Healthy
  • 21 or older
  • Able to provide space for a child
  • Willing to attend parenting classes
  • Willing to undergo a home study
  • Committed to caring for and loving children

Adopting

Adopting is when a child permanently joins your family.

You can qualify to become an adoptive family if you:

  • Attend your local adoptive parent orientation program
  • Fill out the application completely and provide personal references
  • Schedule time with your placement social worker to get your fingerprints taken for a background check
  • Attend parenting classes
  • Complete a homestudy with your social worker
  • Are at least 21 years old
  • Have adequate space for an adopted child or children
  • Are healthy
  • Provide other documents that may be required
  • Are committed to caring for, and loving, children

Costs to foster and adopt

Fostering is free. In fact, you can receive financial assistance to help you to meet some of the children’s needs.

Adopting is free if you adopt a child in New Mexico and are licensed through the Children, Youth and Families Department. In fact, you can receive financial assistance for some of the other standard costs of finalizing your adoption. The following expenses may be reimbursed in part, or completely:

  • Attorney's fees
  • Court costs
  • Transportation, lodging and meals during visits with your potential adoptive child
  • Department required physical and psychiatric exams not covered by your health insurance

If you are licensed through a nonprofit or private agency, they may charge fees. If you adopt a child who is waiting in foster care in another state, your licensing agency may charge fees. However, when families adopt children who are in foster care and eligible for subsidy, the families may be eligible for reimbursement of some adoption-related costs, such as attorney’s fees and court fees, through the child’s State andr federal options.

Agency contact and orientation information

La Familia Incorporated
Phone: 505-766-9361
Address: 707 Broadway NE, Ste.103, Albuquerque, NM 87102

Children, Youth and Families Department
Phone: 800-432-2075
Address: 1031 Lamberton Place NE, Albuquerque, NM 87107

LDS Family Services, Alburquerque
Phone: 505-345-3046
Fax: 505-343-1898
Address: 4400 Presidential Plaza NE, Suite C, Albuquerque, NM 87109

LDS Family Services, Farmington
Phone: 505-327-6123
Fax: 505-327-9562
Address: 925 Cannery Court, Suite A, Farmington, NM 87401

New Mexico Parent and Child Resources, Inc.
Phone: 505-858-3028
Fax: 505-268-4973
Address: 3500 Indian School Road NE, Albuquerque, NM 87106

Find information on all agencies in New Mexico.

Parent support groups

Child S.H.A.R.E. of New Mexico
Contact: Sherri Sollars
Phone: 505-881-4200
Toll-Free Phone: 800-660-0289
Address: 6209 Hendrix NE, Albuquerque, NM 87110

Parents for Behaviorally Different Children

Phone: 505-265-0430
In-State Phone: 800-273-PBDC (800-273-7232)
Address: 1101 Cardenas NE, Suite 202, Albuquerque, NM 87110

Parents Reaching Out (PRO), Parents of Children with Handicaps
Contact: Sally Van Curen
Phone: 505-247-0192
Toll-Free Phone: 800-524-5176
Address: 1920-B Columbia Drive SE, Albuquerque, NM 87031

Information on New Mexico's children

There are 2,316 children in foster care in New Mexico; 705 of these children are waiting for adoptive families.

Children become available for adoption for a number of reasons, including neglect or abuse. Children often experience conflicting emotions or grief over the loss of important people in their lives.

Some children may have brothers and sisters, and they may need families who can keep them with their siblings. Our children represent every race, age, and religion. All of these children have different talents, hopes. and dreams and all of them deserve a loving family.

Our children currently live in foster homes, group homes or treatment centers.