An Adoption Evaluation, sometimes informally called a “social study” is defined by the Texas Family Code as “a pre-placement or post-placement evaluative process through which information and recommendations regarding adoption of a child may be made to the court, the parties, and the parties’ attorneys” [Texas Family Code, Subchapter E, Section 107.151(1)].
Adoption evaluations are ordered by the Court in connection with adoptions, including private adoptions and step-parent adoptions. An adoption evaluation involves home visits, interviews of parents and children (both those to be adopted and any others living in the home) observation of the prospective adoptive parent and the child interacting with one another, background checks, and other elements that are defined by law. Adoption evaluations when the Department of Family and Protective Services are different than the evaluations performed for private adoption and are not a service we provide at this time. If you have questions about what type of adoption evaluation applies in your situation, you may need to consult an attorney who practices family law.
All Evaluators on the Bexar County Domestic Relations Office Evaluators List who are able to provide Custody Evaluations as described above also meet the qualifications outlined in the Texas Family Code for providing Adoption Evaluations. Cherie Shulter provides adoption studies in Bexar and surrounding counties on a limited basis. She also provides oversight for the following providers who are also on the Bexar County Evaluators List: Corrina Espinosa Herrera, LPC-S; Lillian Little, LMSW; and Elvira Marquez, LPC.
Those interested in having Cherie, Corrina, Lillian, or Elvira ordered to provide an adoption study may contact our office directly at 210-822-2600 or may contact the Bexar County Domestic Relations office at 210-335-1242 or visit their website at: https://www.bexar.org/3186/Domestic-Relations-Office
Evaluators listed on the Bexar County Domestic Relations Office’s list of evaluators have already been determined to meet the qualifications required by law. Those that provide adoption evaluations have indicated so and may have provided a starting estimate of costs: https://www.bexar.org/DocumentCenter/View/23558/Child-Custody-Evaluators-List-PDF?bidld=