Adoption Blog

December 31, 2012

Internet Adoption Scams and the Russian Adoption Ban

I was recently contacted on the Adoptimist website. How do I identify a legitimate connection versus one that is from a scammer? The person that contacted me did bring up finances right away, which I hear is a big red flag.

As I mentioned in a previous column, there is no substitute for meeting in-person, reviewing prenatal records and evaluating responsiveness when it comes to sizing-up an expectant mother. Keep in mind that many expectant mothers are under pressure financially [and emotionally]. So requests for financial assistance have to be expected as part of the process. But heavy-handed demands for money [and sometimes more elaborate, albeit subtle, requests for cash] can be tip-offs that an expectant mother is not completely legitimate.

Reluctance on the part of expectant mothers to furnish medical/prenatal records may be a sign that there are troubling issues they wish to hide. Also, it may be wise to be wary of anyone who expresses certainty – as in you are definitely “the one/the couple” for me – prior to much contact or sharing of information. Thoughtful biological parents will take some time to size-up adoptive parents when the decision to place is truly genuine.

What are your thoughts on the recently announced Russia adoption ban and how does it shed light on the process of domestic adoption?

For years, the international adoption program in Russia has offered thousands of children facing bleak futures the chance to thrive in the homes of loving US adoptive parents. Please view my entire post on the Russian adoption ban for more thoughts on this topic.

About The Author

Sanford M. Benardo, Esq.

Sanford M. Benardo has achieved global recognition within the legal and medical communities as an innovator in the fields of surrogate parenting and third party family building. For years, he has been a featured commentator when major television outlets cover stories related to assisted reproduction and adoption, and he is quoted often in domestic and international print media.

Visit Sanford's site at
You can email Sanford at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

About This Adoption Blog

The Adoptimist blog features advice, tips, and inspiration for adoptive parents who are actively pursuing adoption connections online.

Adoption Topics