State Contact

Marianne Grodalski
DCYF
101 Friendship Street, 2nd fl
Bristol, RI 02903
401-528-3743
[email protected]

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Adoption Rhode Island:

http://www.adoptionri.org/

Rhode Island’s medical assistance: 
https://dhs.ri.gov/programs-and-services/medicaid-medicare-programs

DCYF policy on adoption assistance:

Select Division of Family Services, then Family Services Unit, then Adoption Subsidy
https://dcyf.ri.gov/about-us/dcyf-policies-operating-procedures

In Rhode Island a child with special needs is defined 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:

  1. Nine years of age or older
  2. Member of an ethnic or racial minority
  3. Member of a sibling group of two or more children being adopted together
  4. Documented medical condition or a physical, emotional, or mental disability
  5. At high risk of developing a medical condition or a physical, emotional, or mental disability, based upon family background or history (if this is the only criteria will only qualify $0 with Medicaid at the time of adoption).
  6. Prior adoption disruption or dissolution

Children must be legally free for adoption to be eligible for adoption assistance.

The rates below represent the maximum amount per child. Specific rates are negotiated on a case-by-case basis based on the child’s needs and the family’s circumstances.  Children who qualify for Tier 1 or Tier 2 (mild needs) qualify for a rate based on age their age.

Age Rate
0-3 $24/day
4-11 $27/day
12+ $28/day

Specialized rates may be provided on a case-by-base basis.

The state’s Foster Care Payment Assessment (FCPA) system helps calculate rates to be paid to foster parents, based on each individual child’s needs. The FCPA is also used to determine the maximum amount of adoption assistance that the child would be eligible for.  Rates are solely based on Tier level not age.

Tier 3 $45/day
Tier 4 $55/day
Tier 5 $65/day

Adoption assistance payments typically end when a child reaches 18. Benefits may continue to age 21 if the child has a severe physical or mental disability.

Eligibility for child care services is based upon the need for care. In the event an adoptive parent needs child care services through DCYF, the adoptive parent may call the Permanency Services Unit to request child care services for a child up to age six as part of the adoption assistance agreement. The adoptive parent must provide proof of employment; child care is awarded based on the number of hours worked. For more information, visit https://dhs.ri.gov/programs-and-services/child-care.

Respite care is primarily for medically needy children. For other children (such as those with severe behavior problems), the adoption assistance administrator may be able to help the family access respite. Negotiations must be done before finalization with the social worker who is preparing the adoption assistance agreement.

DCYF may assume costs of residential treatment, with prior approval, if all other available funding (adoptive parents’ medical coverage, funding by local educational authorities, etc.) has been exhausted. Department staff meet with the family to negotiate continued adoption assistance based on the child’s needs and the parent’s continued financial and legal responsibility for the child. If the child needs more intensive services that are not funded by other sources, the parent may sign a Voluntary Placement Agreement with DCYF for assistance with continued funding.

Post adoption services are provided by Adoption Rhode Island.  To read about services that might be available visit, https://adoptionri.org/counseling-and-family-support/

Rhode Island has a Kinship Guardianship Assistance program.  To read more information about the program visit, https://dcyf.ri.gov/sites/g/files/xkgbur416/files/licensing-child-care/documents/kinship-caregiver-guide-031017.pdf