What Does Cps Look For in a Home Study

What Does CPS Look For in a Home Study?

A home study is an important part of the process when someone is interested in becoming a foster parent or adopting a child. It is conducted by Child Protective Services (CPS) or a licensed social worker to assess the suitability of the home and the individuals living in it to provide a safe and nurturing environment for a child.

The specific requirements for a home study can vary depending on the state or country, but there are a few common factors that CPS typically looks for during the evaluation process:

1. Safety and cleanliness: CPS will examine the overall safety of the home, ensuring that there are no hazards or dangers that could harm a child. This includes checking for working smoke detectors, functional locks on windows and doors, and appropriate storage of cleaning supplies and medications. The home must also be clean and free from clutter.

2. Sufficient space: CPS will assess whether the home has enough space to accommodate a child. Each child should have their own bed and adequate storage for their personal belongings. The home should also have appropriate play areas and a designated space for studying or doing homework.

3. Emotional stability: CPS will evaluate the emotional stability and mental health of all individuals living in the home. This includes conducting background checks, interviews, and references to ensure that the individuals are capable of providing a safe and loving environment for a child. Any history of criminal activity, substance abuse, or domestic violence may affect the outcome of the home study.

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4. Financial stability: CPS will review the financial stability of the individuals or family applying for foster care or adoption. This ensures that they are capable of meeting the child’s needs, including food, clothing, education, and healthcare. While there is no specific income requirement, CPS will assess whether the family has a stable and reliable source of income.

5. Support system: CPS will inquire about the support system available to the family. This includes evaluating the relationships with extended family members, friends, and neighbors who can provide assistance and support when needed. Having a strong support system is crucial in raising a child and meeting their emotional and social needs.


1. How long does a home study take?

The duration of a home study can vary depending on various factors such as the complexity of the case, the responsiveness of the applicants, and the availability of the social worker. On average, it can take anywhere from three to six months to complete a home study.

2. Will my home study be approved if I have a criminal record?

Having a criminal record does not automatically disqualify someone from becoming a foster parent or adopting a child. Each case is assessed individually, taking into consideration the nature of the offense, how recent it occurred, and any subsequent rehabilitation efforts. It is essential to be open and honest about your criminal history during the home study process.

3. Can I adopt or foster if I am single or LGBTQ+?

Yes, being single or identifying as LGBTQ+ does not disqualify someone from becoming a foster parent or adopting a child. CPS evaluates the individual’s ability to provide a safe and nurturing environment, regardless of their marital status or sexual orientation.

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4. Can I appeal if my home study is not approved?

Yes, if your home study is not approved, you may have the opportunity to appeal the decision. It is important to consult with an attorney or adoption professional who can guide you through the appeals process.

5. What support services are available after the home study is approved?

Once the home study is approved, individuals or families may have access to various support services, such as training, counseling, financial assistance, and respite care. These services aim to support foster parents or adoptive parents in providing the best possible care for the child.

It is important to remember that the purpose of a home study is to ensure the well-being and safety of a child. CPS conducts these evaluations to place children in loving and stable homes where their needs can be met. By meeting the requirements and being open and honest throughout the process, individuals or families can increase their chances of having a successful home study.