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Nowadays, there is controversy surrounding what would traditioally be termed a private adoption because of the risks involved as well as the potential for unethical circumstances. Private adoption is often referred to as "gray adoption" which obviouly connotates something unsavory or illegal. While above-board private adoption is not always indicative of something shady, there are steps that you need to take to protect yourself and the child(ren) if you are considering a private adoption. Most states will require a home study be conducted to determine placement of the child within the family. While some prospective adopting parents may not see the need for this, it is important to assure both the adopting family as well as anyone in the child's background that everything is above-board as well as what is in the best interest of the child. Legally, private adoption must be handled carefully as well. Protect yourself from having something go wrong down the line by ensuring that all of the parties involved in the private adoption are above board and respected by the legal and adoption communities.