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Adoption revision bill would make it easier to adopt in Utah

Feb 12, 2024, 8:43 PM | Updated: Feb 13, 2024, 5:38 pm

utah capitol pictured, a new law centers adoption legal expenses open records utah...

FILE: The Capitol is pictured in Salt Lake City on Monday, Jan. 29, 2024. (Kristin Murphy,/Deseret News)

(Kristin Murphy,/Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY — Utah lawmakers are tackling the high costs of adoption by proposing changes that could significantly reduce legal expenses for families who want to adopt.

SB147 would streamline the adoption process in Utah by shortening certain waiting periods. It would also minimize the number of home visits for couples who want to adopt. This shortened bonding time, where a judge could invalidate the adoption, would help those parents have fewer legal costs.

The bill’s sponsor, Sen Chris Wilson, calls these changes common sense.

“This can add unnecessary cost to an adoption as attorneys are kept on retainer longer, to see the adoption through.”

The bill includes provisions for birth mothers as well. These include three counseling sessions, with one available after the birth.

The legislation also addresses abortion.

“(It would) create a grant program to help support Pregnancy Resource Centers that support women who choose pregnancy over abortion,” Wilson said.

“This bill appropriates $245,000 for grants for these centers.”

The bill, sponsored by Sen. Chris Wilson, R-Cache, Rich Counties, has cleared the Senate and is now on its way to the Utah House of Representatives.

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Adoption revision bill would make it easier to adopt in Utah