Adoption Assistance Program

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AAP stands for Adoption Assistance Program. It is a program funded by your state in order to help families who have adopted at risk children. When you adopt a child from foster care, you are often eligible to continue receiving a monthly stipend from the state to help with your expenses. In some rare cases, even if you adopt domestically, you can still be eligible for AAP if the child is considered “at risk.” Your social worker will discuss AAP with you during your home study. Visit the ChildsWorld website to learn more.


The following is taken from the AAP website:

Federal subsidies were created by Congress (through Public Law 96-272 – the Adoption Assistance and Child Welfare Act of 1980) to encourage the adoption of special needs children and remove the financial disincentives for families to adopt. Recognizing that adoptive parents often experience financial difficulty meeting the special needs of children who formerly were placed in California’s foster care system, the State Legislature created the Adoption Assistance Program (AAP). In creating the program, the Legislature intended to benefit children in foster care by providing the security and stability of a permanent home through adoption. Children may receive a federally funded subsidy under Title IV-E or a state-funded subsidy per state guidelines.

To apply for the AAP, adoptive families must submit a completed Request for Adoption Assistance (AAP 1) form which is provided by their licensed adoption agency. The responsible public agency will determine the child’s special needs eligibility for participation in the program. If the child is deemed eligible, theresponsible public agency will negotiate a signed adoption assistance agreement, or a deferred adoption assistance agreement will be executed with the adoptive parents, prior to the adoption finalization. A reassessment of the child’s needs and family’s circumstances is conducted every two years. The amount of financial assistance is determined based upon the special needs of the child and circumstances of the family. An adopted child who receives AAP benefits from California may move anywhere in the world and still receive monthly subsidy payments until the age of 18 or 21, if the child has a mental or physical disability.

Adopting a child from the state that has a disability qualifies families for a monthly check of $1000 until the child is 18 or 19 if the child stays in school. They also receive a medical card for the child for the same time period.







The Kentucky State Personnel Cabinet administers this program that began in 1998 which reimburses a portion of the adoption cost for state employees. This program provides up to 5,000 dollars per family for direct costs related to the adoptions of a special needs child, and up to 3,000 dollars per family for all other child adoptions. This money is provided by the workplace of the parent and cannot exceed 150,000 a year.
The child must meet Kentucky’s definition of “special needs” and a reasonable effort made to place the child without adoption assistance.A child with special needs is defined in Kentucky as a child that has at least one of the following needs or circumstances that may be a barrier to placement or adoption without financial assistance:

  • Two years of age or older and African American
  • Seven years of age or older with a significant emotional attachment or psychological tie to her foster family and the Department has determined that it would be in the child’s best interest to remain with the family
  • A member of a sibling group of two or more children placed at the same time in the same family
  • A physical or mental disability
  • An emotional or behavioral disorder
  • A documented risk of physical, mental or emotional disorder
  • A previous adoption disruption or multiple placements


Active-duty military personnel are eligible for a reimbursement of up to $2,000 per child adopted to cover one-time adoption-related costs such as application and court fees or travel expenses. No more than $5,000 can be reimbursed in any one year, and payments are only issued after adoptions are finalized.Link:

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